Industry News

Boston Sports Talker Mark Dondero to Join “98.5 The Sports Hub”

The Boston Herald reports that sports talk host Mark Dondero is leaving Audacy’s sports talk WEEI, Boston to join Beasley Media Group’s crosstown WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub,” as a weekend He’s been co-hosting the weekend “Mark and Kichen Show” with Ben Kichen at WEEI. Dondero says, “Obviously I’ve learned a ton from him (Kichen), about the radio business, talking in general. And I’ll say this: Ben Kichen is a star and an underrated talent in this business, whether you’ve heard of him or not. And it has been an absolute joy and pleasure to work with him on the air for almost seven years.” Read the Herald story here.

Industry News

Robert “Hardy” Poole Named Morning Co-Host at “98.5 The Sports Hub”

Beasley Media Group announces that Robert “Hardy” Poole moves from the midday “Zolak & Bertrand” show to morning drive as the new co-host of the “Toucher & Hardy” show on sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub,” effective January 4. Beasley says, “Over the past eight years, he’s played a key role in propelling the ‘Zolak & Bertrand’ show to unprecedented ratings success in theirim midday slot. Hardy has also lent his voice and creative talents to various platforms across the station, including the creation of the wildly popular ‘Fuppets’ videos for Felger & Mazz. In addition, he has been the longtime host of the ‘Sports Hub Golf Club’ show and can also be heard on Beasley’s Rock 92.9.” Morning host Fred Toucher says, “I’ve known Hardy and admired his talent for many years. I’m very excited to begin this new chapter and feel revitalized by the new opportunity.” Hardy comments, “As a lifelong radio guy, I’m thrilled for this opportunity. I’m looking forward to working with Fred and the rest of the morning show crew on what I believe will be a great show.” Station PD Rick Radzik states, “Hardy is one of the most talented and creative individuals I have ever worked with in radio. Teaming him with Fred was just a natural fit for our new morning show. I look forward to them providing great content and entertaining our listeners for years to come.”

Industry News

Report: Middleton Interviews for WBZ-FM, Boston Morning Gig

A Boston Herald piece by Rick Sobey reveals that WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” personality Kendra Middleton has interviewed for the open morning drive position on the station alongside Fred Toucher. Rich Shertenlieb parted ways with the company last month. However, Middleton appeared onim afternoon drive host Mike Felger’s Facebook Live “Off-Air Show” and said she doesn’t think she’ll get the gig. When asked why she said, “Just because I think that I’m young and new. I think [program director] Rick [Radzik] took me very seriously. It’s just I think that there’s probably someone who, I don’t know, I think that I’m qualified. It’s just I haven’t been here very long, so I don’t know.” Station afternoon personality Jim Murray has said he’s not interested in the position. The piece notes that midday personality Rob “Hardy” Poole is being talked about as a candidate for the morning show post. Read the Herald story here.

Industry News

WBZ-FM, Boston’s Toucher & Rich Show Breaks Up

The highly rated “Toucher & Rich” show – starring Fred Toucher (left) and Rich Shertenlieb (right) – on Beasley Media Group’s sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” is no more. Shertenlieb andim Beasley were unable to come to terms on a new contract a few weeks after the company announced Toucher had inked a new, multiyear deal that will see him continue as lead host of the morning show. WBTS-TV, Boston “NBC10” reports that Toucher announced the change on this morning’s show and indicated he was surprised when management told him Shertenlieb was leaving the program. He also said management wanted him to tell the audience that the company made him “a multi-year offer that he chose not to accept” and that “negotiations weren’t going anywhere.” Shertenlieb has not commented publicly other than to inform the show’s X followers that he has a new X handle. See the “NBC10” report here.

Industry News

Fred Toucher Signs Extension with “98.5 The Sports Hub”

WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” morning drive personality Fred Toucher and Beasley Media Group agree to terms on a new, multi-year contract that keeps Toucher at the helm of the morning show “for years to come.” The station says, “Under Toucher’s tenure, the show has been recognized amongim the top sports morning shows in America and has won numerous national industry awards including a Marconi Award. Toucher was a foundational member of the launch of the station in August 2009. Prior to joining the ‘98.5 Sports Hub’ team, he worked at the former legendary rock station, WBCN.” Toucher comments, “I am thrilled to be able to work with my Beasley family over the coming years. I will continue my record of immense competence and brilliance.” Station PD Rick Radzik adds, “Fred has been entertaining ‘Sports Hub’ listeners each morning since 2009 with his compelling viewpoints and opinions on a wide range of topics. We are very pleased that he will continue on with us for years to come.” There’s no mention of morning drive co-host and Toucher’s longtime partner Rich Shertenlieb in the press release and the Boston Globe’s Chad Finn writes about the possibility Shertenlieb will exit the station soon. Read his column here.

Industry News

WBZ-FM, Boston and Celtics Renew Broadcast Deal

The NBA’s Boston Celtics and Beasley Media Group sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” announces a multiyear extension of their broadcast agreement. The station has been the officialim flagship Station of the Boston Celtics Radio Network since 2013. Under the terms of the pact, Sean Grande and Cedric Maxwell will continue to be the voices of the team radio broadcast. In addition to the games, “98.5 The Sports Hub” will also air Celtics related programming throughout the season, including a weekly call-in from Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla on “The Zolak & Bertrand Show” each Wednesday during the season.

Industry News

“98.5 The Sports Hub” Announces New Lineup Additions

Beasley Media Group’s Boston sports talker WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” reveals three changes to its program lineup. The company says longtime staffer Joe Murray takes over the night hosting duties, which will include anchoring the stations coverage of Bruins and Celtics broadcasts. Beasley says Murray has spent more than a decade contributing to each daypart at the station.  In addition to serving as a regular on-air fill in-host,im he’s also co-hosted “The Over/Under Show,” the station’s dedicated gambling show and podcast that launched four years ago. He also currently co-hosts the New England Patriots post-game show following the game broadcasts on The Sports Hub Patriots Radio Network. Leroy Irvin expands his role on the station as he’ll continue to serve as ima regular weekend co-host and will add on-air duties for New England Patriots broadcasts on the station, co-hosting the postgame show after each game. Irvin also serves as part of the “Get Up Crew” on Beasley’s sister urban contemporary WBQT-FM “HOT 96.9.” Finally, Cerrone Battle, formerly of the “Play Action Sports Podcast” and “That 617 Life” on NBCSB, joins the staff in which he’ll contribute to the station’s nighttime and weekend programming. Station program director Rick Radzik comments, “Joe, Leroy and Cerrone all grew up in Boston and, like our listeners, have an engrained passion for sports. It’s nice to see Joe’s many years of dedication pay off, have Leroy’s role at the station elevated, and hear Cerrone once again in his hometown. I’m happy for all three of them!”

Industry News

Fred Toucher Returns to “98.5 The Sports Hub” and Reveals Detox Stint

Morning drive personality Fred Toucher was back on the air on Friday (6/2) on Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” after missing the first four days of the week and told his listeners that he checked himself into a detox facility on May 28 to deal with his alcohol issues. CBS News Boston reports that Toucher explained on air, “I was voluntarilyim locking myself up so I wouldn’t drink anymore, so I knew I wouldn’t drink. That’s how I felt like, I was like, all right, I’ve lost control, I’ve lost control of alcohol, I’ve lost control, I’m not thinking like me, I need to make sure that I’m in a position where I do not have the opportunity to drink. Was it fun? It was the worst five days of my entire life.” Toucher says he intends to continue the outpatient therapy treatments. “The setup I have right now is by far the most gnarly setup I’ve had. I’m talking about like four hours a day of intense therapy for alcohol and intense therapy for anxiety… Got out yesterday morning and immediately went to an outpatient facility, then went to a therapist. Right after the show today, I’m going back to that outpatient facility. So, I’m taking this recovery very, very seriously.” Read the CBS News story here.

Industry News

Status of WBZ-FM, Boston’s Fred Toucher Unknown

On Wednesday’s program, WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” morning drive host Rich Shertenlieb spoke about the absence of co-host Fred Toucher on this week’s programs after Toucher’s concerning social media posts last weekend. Those posts have since been deleted but they made references to wishing to die. Shertenlieb told listeners that their desire to know what’s going on with Toucher is understandable but that hisim hands are tied as anything he could say has to be approved by management. The Boston Globe reports that Shertenlieb said, “The last time he was out for an extended period, I gave an update and was gently asked for a lot of different reasons that any statement regarding him has to be approved by management. There have been statements that have been submitted, some have been approved, some haven’t been. It just turns into asking, ‘What can I say? What can I say?’ Listen, no one wants to be in this position. Fred doesn’t want to be in this position, the station doesn’t want to be in this position, I certainly don’t want to be in this position, but as of now, all I’ve been approved to tell you, because you’re such great listeners and we love you, is that he’s not here today, I’m not sure exactly when he’ll be back, but I’ve been a friend of Fred’s for years and I hope the best for him.” Read the Boston Globe story here.

Industry News

Fred Toucher Returns to “98.5 The Sports Hub”

WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” morning drive personality Fred Toucher returned to the program on Thursday after a medical leave of absence to deal with a throat problem that was affecting his voice. Co-hostim Rich Shertenleib had taken a sick day, so the two haven’t worked together since Toucher accused his co-workers of not reaching out to him while he dealt with what was thought to be a cancer scare. He was ultimately diagnosed with leukoplakia, something that can be caused by smoking. Toucher told his listeners, “I have two pieces of advice: Do not smoke and get a second opinion. They thought that I had cancer. If you saw pictures of the original thing they took of my throat, there was a big lump on my vocal cord, like a big lump. I wasn’t supposed to talk for two weeks. And now it just turns out to be Leukoplakia.”

Industry News

Fred Toucher Could Return to WBZ-FM, Boston Soon

According to a story by Brandon Contes in Awful Announcing, WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” morning drive co-host Fred Toucher says he may get his doctor’s permission to go back on the air after anim extended absence for a chronic throat condition that led to a cancer scare. Toucher, who co-hosts the morning show with Rich Shertenlieb, says in a video he posted to Twitter, “I feel my voice is getting stronger. I think that if I go to the doctor on Monday, he is going to give me permission to go back on the air. So, what turned out as a big, big cancer scare, where I was given assurances that it was cancer in my throat, might turn out to be that I needed not to talk for a very long time.” Read the Awful Announcing piece here.

Industry News

98.5 The Sports Hub’s Fred Toucher to Have Throat Surgery

Fred Toucher – co-host of the “Toucher & Rich” morning drive show on Beasley Media Group’s sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” – says he’ll be having surgery on his throat and thanks a listener for connecting him with the doctor that will do the procedure. Toucher has missed time on the air recently due to a persistent throat problem that’s affected his voice. Other doctors have not been able to pinpoint the problem. Yesterday (4/10), his on-air partner Rich Shertenlieb read a statement from Toucher on the program that read: “My voice has been messed up for a long time. I had been going to doctors and they didn’t seem overly concerned. However, a listener heard me and put me in touch with a doctor he works with. I went and things didn’t go great. He found some things in my throat that concerned him. He told me not to worry because he could fix all of it. Not to sound dramatic but it is possible a listener saved my life by setting up that appointment.” Toucher also said via social media that he plans to be back but is under a “no talking” order from the doctor and adds, “To that, I am grateful, even though the doctor doesn’t take insurance. Between this and my divorce, I’m f—ed financially! Sorry kids – Christmas is going to look a lot different this year.”

Industry News

“98.5 The Sports Hub” Host Tony Massarotti Serving Suspension

WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” afternoon drive co-host Tony Massarotti is off the air this weekTony Massarotti - WBZ-FM serving a suspension for his racially insensitive comments made on last Friday’s program. As TALKERS reported on Tuesday (2/21), Massarotti – who co-hosts the show with Mike Felger – on Monday (2/20) apologized for his comments. You can see TALKERS coverage of that here.

Industry News

Boston Sports Talker Tony Massarotti Apologizes for Racist Joke

Tony Massarotti – one half of the afternoon drive duo of “Felger and Mazz” on Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” – apologized yesterday (2/20) for the racially “insensitive” and “hurtful” comments he made on Friday’s program. The Boston Herald reports that Massarotti’s co-host Mike Felger wasMichael Felger - WBZ-FM broadcasting remotely from a business center in a New Orleans hotel in which two Black people were sitting behind him. Referencing a previous trip to New Orleans in which Felger’s vehicle was stolen, Massarotti asked Felger if the two could hear him and when Felger replied that they couldn’t, he said, “OK, so I would be careful if I were you because the last time you were around a couple of guys like that, they stole your car.” During his apology on Monday, Massarotti said he gets why the joke, intended to be poking fun at Felger, was wrong. “It didn’t come off that way. It came off as something far broader and ignorant, and I’m regretful of that… I sincerely apologize, and I will do my best to make sure it never happens again.”Read the story in the Boston Herald.

Industry News

Beasley Sports Talkers Partner with Soccer Clubs

Beasley Media Group sports talk stations announce partnerships with Major League Soccer clubs. First, WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” and the New England Revolution extend their partnership to make “98.5 The Sports Hub” the flagship home of the Revolution for years to come. Longtime Revolution play-by-playBeasley Media Group - Logo voice Brad Feldman returns to the call alongside former Revolution and U.S. Men’s National Team forward Charlie Davies. Additionally, “98.5 The Sports Hub” will introduce “The Soccer Show” – a weekly one-hour program to air on Saturday mornings from 6:00 am to – 7:00 am. In Philadelphia, Beasley’s WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” announces a new partnership with the Philadelphia Union to serve as the club’s official radio broadcast partner. Primary hosts of Union match broadcasts will be Dave Leno and Sheanon Williams.

Industry News

Marc Bertrand Inks New Deal with Beasley’s “98.5 The Sports Hub”

Sports talk host Marc Bertrand signs a multiyear contract extension with Beasley Media Group sports talker WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub.” Bertrand co-hosts the midday “Zolak & Bertrand” show with Scott Zolak. The station says, “Bertrand, or ‘Beetle’ as he’s affectionately known, became a co-host of the highlyKeith L. Williams - WBZ-FM rated program in February 2015. The ‘Zolak & Bertrand’ show, along with Rob ‘Hardy’ Poole, have consistently maintained their #1 midday ranking in the market.” Bertrand comments, “I’m thrilled to be continuing at ‘98.5 The Sports Hub.’ I take great pride in having been a part of the station since its inception. I’m fortunate to have great teammates on ‘Zolak & Bertrand’ and as a group, we are incredibly thankful for our loyal listeners. It is their support and engagement that makes this job fun every single day.” Program director Rick Radzik states, “We are very pleased to have Marc continue on with ‘the Sports Hub’ for the coming years. Marc, Zo & Hardy have been entertaining Boston sports fans since 2015. To have that relationship continue for the coming years is a win for everyone.”

Industry News

Changes at WEEI, Boston

Audacy brings Boston sports radio personality Adam Jones aboard to co-host the afternoon drive program on WEEI-FM. The new show is called “Jones & Mego” featuring Jones, Meghan Ottolini, and Christian Arcand and debuts on January 30. Jones was most recently evening host at Beasley Media Group’s crosstown WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub.” Audacy Boston SVP and market manager Mike Thomas says, “This is the third runVehicle registration plate - Banner for Adam and I working together. He’s talented, opinionated, informed and funny. Miss a day and miss a lot. Afternoons on WEEI will be can’t-miss entertainment.” At the same time, Thomas announces that Ken Laird is being promoted from operations manager for the station to brand manager. He says, “Ken has stepped up and really proven himself as a leader this past year, and I’m very happy to elevate him in this new role. I know the best is yet to come.” Laird comments, “Working at WEEI, an iconic and influential brand, has been an honor dating back to my start here in 2002. To take on a brand manager role some 20 years later is both incredibly humbling and exciting. I can’t thank Mark Hannon and Mike Thomas enough for the guidance and opportunity they’ve given me. The sports radio ratings share in Boston is proof that the nation’s most passionate fans live here, and I’m ready for the challenge to work with this great staff to deliver the daily entertainment those fans crave.”

Front Page News Industry News

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

WOLB-AM, Baltimore’s Larry Young Receives TALKERS Lifetime Achievement Award. Pictured above is WOLB-AM, Baltimore morning drive host Larry Young (left) receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award from TALKERS magazine publisher Michael Harrison (right) at the TALKERS 2022 Convention at Hofstra University on Friday, June 10. Young, who has hosted the WOLB morning show since 1998, is retiring at the end of this year.


Newsmax Personality Rob Schmitt Addresses TALKERS 2022 Attendees. Pictured above is Newsmax TV personality Rob Schmitt addressing the lunch crowd at TALKERS 2022 at Hofstra University on Friday, June 10. Schmitt, who previously served with FOX News Channel, hosts the “Rob Schmitt Tonight” program weeknights at 7:00. Schmitt spoke at the lunch program during which WOLB-AM, Baltimore host Larry Young received the Lifetime Achievement Award (see above).


Round Two of May PPMs Released. The second of four rounds of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s May 2022 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including Washington, Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Tampa, Denver, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Nielsen’s May 2022 sweep covered April 28 – May 25. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways for this group of markets. In Washington DC, Hubbard Broadcasting’s all-news WTOP remains ranked #3 after losing three-tenths for a 7.8 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) finish, while Cumulus Media’s crosstown news/talk WMAL-FM tacks on two-tenths to finish with a 3.9 share good for the #10 rank. Beasley Media Group’s sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” dominates as the #1 station with a 9.8 share after adding 1.4 shares during the survey. Across town, iHeartMedia’s news/talk WRKO dips one-tenth for a 4.2 share and falls to the #8 rank, while sister all-news WBZ-AM remains locked in the #6 rank after rising one-tenth for a 4.8 share finish. The talk stations in the Twin Cities are locked in a tight battle with Audacy’s WCCO-AM adding a half share to wrap the survey with a 4.5 share and the #12 rank. Hubbard Broadcasting’s KTMY-FM adds six-tenths for a 3.3 share finish and a rise to the #14 rank, while iHeartMedia’s KTLK-AM dips two-tenths, posting a 2.8 share good for the #15 rank. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as yesterday’s first round) here.


Rick Ankiel to Join Good Karma’s ‘ESPN West Palm’ for AM Show Appearances. Baseball great Rick Ankiel is making regular appearances on Good Karma Brand’s WUUB-FM, West Palm Beach “ESPN West Palm” as he joins “Josh Cohen and the HomeTeam with Din Thomas and Tina” in afternoons. His appearances are being sponsored by All Dry of the Treasure Coast restoration and cleanup. Ankiel spent more than 10 years in MLB, mostly with the St. Louis Cardinals. He says, “Spending my life in the area I’ve been a fan and even caller to Josh Cohen’s show for many years. I’m excited to join ‘ESPN 106.3’ and Josh Cohen and the HomeTeam with Din Thomas and Tina to talk baseball and more on a regular basis.” ESPN West Palm market manager Stephanie Prince says, “We are excited to have a local legend join the ‘ESPN 106.3’ airwaves! Rick’s experience on and off the field will help create fun, engaging, and appointment listening to our fans.”


Gemini XIII Announces New Ad Sales and Marketing Hires. The new premium audio content, production and marketing services firm Gemini XIII announced the addition of Erica Farmer as vice president, strategic marketing, and Jaclyn Mifka as director of ad operations & planning. Two are based at the company’s New York headquarters and report to co-founder and COO Charles Steinhauer. Farmer was most recently with Westwood One as digital marketing director for the Cumulus Podcast Network. Mifka recently served with ESPN Audio as senior digital & audio sales manager. Gemini XIII co-founder and CEO Spencer Brown comments, “This step marks the first of many in establishing Gemini’s first-class sales and marketing capabilities. Erica and Jaci are experienced audio experts, and we are thrilled to have them join our team.”


TALKERS News Notes. There’s an interview with Chicago comic and media personality Steve Cochran in the Daily Herald by media writer Robert Feder that you can see here. In the interview, Feder asks direct questions of Cochran – who is joining Cumulus Media’s WLS-AM as morning host – about his plans for the new morning show and the 1.0 share, 27th place program he’s inheriting…..Shining City Audio, a history-focused podcast studio joint venture between Audacy’s C13Originals and Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and #1 New York Times bestselling author Jon Meacham, announce “History is US,” a six-part audio documentary written and narrated by Dr. Eddie S. Glaude, James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor and chair of the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University. Audacy says that “‘History is US’ will explore how American history – so indelibly shaped by race – haunts us, and how our past failures and refusals to admit them continue to shape the way we live our lives today.”…..TuneIn announce a new deal with Rivian that says will help to continue “positioning the company as a leader and innovator in bringing premium, live audio to drivers worldwide.” TuneIn CEO Richard Stern says, “We are incredibly excited to be adding Rivian to our existing lineup of automotive and connected car technology partners. At TuneIn, we’re working with the world’s most innovative automotive companies to reinvent radio and live premium audio entertainment for the connected car. Our deep partnerships in the automotive industry enable drivers to discover and access the best audio content from around the world, directly through their dashboard, via a simple touch or voice command via Alexa.”


ATTENTION: TALKERS Heavy Hundred Members. TALKERS has been made aware that a trophy and plaque manufacturing company has been contacting talk show hosts who are listed as being members of the Heavy Hundred (The 100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America) and is soliciting them to purchase a costly plaque or trophy commemorating the honor. Please be advised that this plaque (or a variety of variations of awards and trophies available in their catalogue) is unofficial and the company – SHOWMARK MEDIA, LLC – enjoys no official connection or licensing agreement with TALKERS. According to TALKERS VP/associate publisher Matthew B. Harrison, “TALKERS has never engaged in charging its award recipients for items or products indicating their receiving an honor bestowed by our organization.”


The Economy, Primaries/Trump & the GOP, Gun Control Legislation, Kavanaugh Plot, January 6 Hearings, Russia-Ukraine War, Extreme Weather-Yellowstone Damage Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/14). The Fed’s planned meeting today to address the nation’s inflation problem, the soaring price of gasoline & food, and concerns about a recession; Tuesday’s primary elections for the November midterms and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; the work in congress to craft gun legislation in the aftermath of the recent deadly mass shootings; the plot to assassinate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and the issue of security for justices; the January 6 hearings; Russia’s continuing invasion of Ukraine and the effect on the world economy; the Western heat & drought and the floods damaging Yellowstone National Park were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Ratings Takeaways

May 2022 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Two

May 2022 PPM Data – Information for the May 2022 sweep has been released for Washington, DC; Boston; Miami; Seattle; Detroit; Phoenix; Minneapolis; San Diego; Tampa; Denver; Baltimore; and St. Louis.

Nielsen Audio’s May 2022 sweep covered April 28 – May 25.

TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian provides “Ratings Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty.

Cited as well are each particular city’s #1 station (6+) and loftiest (6+) upticks and drop-offs.

All comparisons noted are April 2022 – May 2022 (6+).


News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WMAL “105.9 FM – Where Washington Comes To Talk” 3.7 – 3.9, +.2, anchored in tenth-place

News: Hubbard Broadcasting-owned WTOP & WTLP “Washington’s Top News” 8.1 – 7.8, -.3, repeats in third-place

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WJFK-FM “106.7 The Fan” (Nationals) 2.8 – 3.4, +.6, #16 to #13

Public Radio News/Talk: American University-owned WAMU 9.7 – 10.1, +.4, #1

Pacifica’s public radio news/talk-jazz hybrid KPFW .7 – .6, -.1, flat at #19

Number One 6+: public radio news/talk WAMU, fifth month in succession, 9.7 – 10.1, +.4

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: contemporary Christian WGTS (+1.6)*

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: adult contemporary WASH (-.7)

*Represents a tie for the largest April 2022 – May 2022 increase (6+) of any station from these 12 PPM-markets


News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WRKO “AM 680 The Voice Of Boston” 4.3 – 4.2, -.1, seventh to eighth

News – Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” 4.7 – 4.8, +.1, anchored in sixth-place

Sports Talk: Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” 8.4 – 9.8, +1.4, second to first

Audacy-owned WEEI-FM “93.7 Boston’s Sports Station” (Red Sox) 3.3 – 3.6, +.3, #13 to #10

Public Radio News/Talk: Boston University’s WBUR 3.7 – 3.5, -.2, #9 to #11

WGBH Educational Foundation-owned WGBH 3.5 – 2.7, -.8, #12 to #15

Number One 6+: sports talk WBZ-FM, first month, 8.4 – 9.8, +1.4

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: sports talk WBZ-FM (+1.4)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease (Tie): classic hits-oldies WROR and public radio news/talk WGBH (-.8)


News/Talk: None in the top twenty

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Dade County School Board-owned WLRN 2.1 – 2.5, +.4, #19 to #14

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group urban AC WHQT, first month, 7.0 – 8.6, +1.6

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: urban AC WHQT (+1.6)*

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: classic hits-oldies WMXJ (-.7)

*Represents a tie for the largest April 2022 – May 2022 increase (6+) of any station from these 12 PPM-markets


News/Talk: Bonneville-owned KIRO-FM “97.3 FM” 6.3 – 6.9, +.6, second to first

News: Lotus Communications’ KNWN-AM & KNWN-FM “Northwest News Radio” 4.3 – 3.9, -.4, ninth to tenth

Sports Talk: Bonneville-owned KIRO-AM “710 AM ESPN Seattle” (Mariners) steady at 3.9, #11 to #10

Public Radio News/Talk: Northwest Public Radio’s KUOW 5.4 – 5.8, +.4, repeats in fourth-place

Number One 6+: news/talk KIRO-FM, first month, 6.3 – 6.9, +.6

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: contemporary Christian KCMS-FM (+.9)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: adult contemporary KRWM (-1.5)**

**Represents the largest April 2022 – May 2022 decrease (6+) of any station from these 12 PPM-markets


News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WJR “News Talk 760 AM” 3.6 – 3.1, -.5, locked at #13

News: Audacy-owned WWJ News Radio 950” (Pistons) 4.4 – 4.5, +.1, ninth to eighth

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WXYT-FM “97.1 The Ticket” (Tigers) 6.3 – 6.2, -.1, third to fourth

WXYT-FM’s internet stream, 1.3 – 1.2, -.1, flat at #20

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Michigan-owned WUOM 2.3 – 2.1, -.2, #16 to #18

Number One 6+: Audacy classic hits-oldies WOMC, fifth consecutive month, 7.6 – 7.4, -.2

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: classic rock WCSX (+.6)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: urban contemporary WJLB (-.9)


News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KFYI “News Talk 550” 4.6 – 4.1, -.5, fifth to seventh

Bonneville-owned KTAR-FM “News 92.3 FM” 2.6 – 2.5, -.1, #15 to #20

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Bonneville’s KMVP-FM “98.7 Arizona’s Sports Station” (Arizona Diamondbacks) 2.3 – 2.8, +.5, #21 to #14

Public Radio News/Talk: Maricopa County Community College-owned KJZZ 5.8 – 5.1, -.7, third to fourth

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KESZ, second month in a row, 6.9 – 6.7, -.2

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: rhythmic CHR KALV (+1.1)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease (Tie): classic rock KSLX and Spanish adult hits KVVA (-.9)


News/Talk: Audacy’s WCCO “News Talk 830” (Minnesota Twins) 3.8 – 4.3, +.5, #13 to #12

Hubbard Broadcasting-owned KTMY “My Talk 107.1” 2.7 – 3.3, +.6, #15 to #14

iHeartMedia’s KTLK-AM “Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130” 3.0 – 2.8, -.2, #14 to #15

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned KFXN “FM 100.3 K-Fan” 5.8 – 6.3, +.5, sixth to fifth

Public Radio News/Talk: Minnesota Public Radio’s KNOW 7.0 – 6.4, -.6, second to fourth

Number One 6+: Hubbard Broadcasting hot AC KSTP-FM, fifth month in a row, 9.0 – 8.2, -.8

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: classic hits-oldies KQQL (+.8)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease (Tie): hot AC KSTP-FM and triple A KCMP (-.8)


News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KOGO “News Radio 600” 3.4 – 2.8, -.6, repeats at #12

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KWFN “97.3 The Fan” (Padres) 1.9 – 2.4, +.5, #18 to #15

Public Radio News/Talk: San Diego State University’s KPBS 5.1 – 6.2, +1.1, fifth to second

Number One 6+: Local Media San Diego adult hits KFBG, second consecutive month, 7.5 – 8.4, +.9

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: public radio news/talk KPBS (+1.1)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: classic rock KGB-FM (-1.0)


News/Talk: Cox Media Group’s WHPT “102.5 The Bone – Real, Raw, Radio” 3.7 – 4.5, +.8, tenth to seventh

iHeartMedia-owned WFLA “News Radio 970” 3.6 – 3.5, -.1, #13 to #11

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WDAE “Tampa Bay’s Sports Radio” (Rays) 1.7 – 2.1, +.4, unchanged at #19

Public Radio News/Talk: University of South Florida’s WUSF 2.7 – 2.8, +.1, #18 to #17

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group adult contemporary WDUV, ninth month in succession, 7.7 – 7.8, +.1

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: news/talk WHPT (+.8)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: alternative WSUN (-1.1)


News/Talk: In the iHeartMedia cluster, KOA “News Radio 850” (Colorado Rockies) flat at 2.7, #12 to #16; KHOW “Talk Radio 630” 1.9 – 2.6, +.7, #17 to #18; and KDFD “Freedom 93.7” 1.7 – 2.1, +.4, #20 to #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Bonneville’s KKFN “104.3 The Fan” 1.9 – 2.1, +.2, #17 to #19

Public Radio News/Talk: Colorado Public Radio-owned KCFR 4.5 – 4.1, -.4, seventh to ninth

Number One 6+: Audacy hot AC KALC, first month, 5.5 – 6.4, +.9

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase (Tie): hot AC KALC and jazz KUVO (+.9)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: hot AC KIMN (-1.0)


News/Talk: WCBM Maryland-owned WCBM “Talk Radio AM 680” 2.8 – 2.6, -.2, flat at #11

Hearst Television’s WBAL News Radio 1090” (Orioles) 2.1 – 2.3, +.2, #16 to #15

Cumulus Media-owned WMAL “105.9 FM – Where Washington Comes To Talk” 1.0 – .7, -.3, repeats at #20

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WJZ-FM “Baltimore Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan” 3.4 – 3.5, +.1, tenth to eighth

Public Radio News/Talk: Your Public Radio Corporation-owned WYPR 3.8 – 3.4, -.4, eighth to ninth

Number One 6+: Radio One urban AC WWIN-FM, fourth month in a row, 8.9 – 9.3, +.4

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: urban contemporary WERQ (+.6)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease (Tie): jazz WEAA and gospel WCAO (-.6)


News/Talk: Audacy’s KMOX “The Voice Of St. Louis” (Cardinals) 4.4 – 4.7, +.3, anchored at #11 and cluster-mate KFTK “Talk 97.1 FM” 2.6 – 2.1, -.5, #14 to #16

iHeartMedia-owned KTLK-FM “104.9 The Patriot” 1.2 – 1.1, -.1, remains at #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Hubbard Broadcasting’s WXOS “101 ESPN” 5.6 – 5.7, +.1, continues in ninth-place

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Missouri-owned KWMU 2.1 – 2.6, +.5, #17 to #14

Number One 6+: Hubbard Broadcasting rock KSHE, fifth month in a row, 8.8 – 8.9, +.1

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Increase: urban AC WFUN (+1.1)

Largest 6+ April 2022 – May 2022 Decrease: triple A KDHX (-1.3)

Up next: May 2022 overviews for Portland; Charlotte; San Antonio; Sacramento; Pittsburgh; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; Orlando; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Kansas City; and Columbus.

Email Mike Kinosian at

Front Page News Industry News

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Dominic ‘Zakk’ Zaccagnini Named PD for WHAM, Rochester and WSYR, Syracuse. Radio programming pro Dominic “Zakk” Zaccagnini is named program director for “NewsRadio WHAM 1180,” classic rock WAIO-FM “Radio 95.1” in Rochester and news/talk WSYR, Syracuse, effective immediately. He will report to Tias Schuster, SVP of programming for iHeartMedia Upstate New York. Zaccagnini joins the iHeartMedia Rochester and Syracuse markets from Cumulus Media’s rock KSAN-FM, San Francisco where he was program director and afternoon drive host while also handling pregame host duties for the Kansas City Chiefs on KCFX-FM, Kansas City. Schuster says, “Zakk is a winner with deep programming knowledge coming from multiple formats and major markets. We look forward to his vision, energy, and leadership that he will bring to our stations.” Zakk comments, “It is a privilege for me to join so many talented professionals and become part of these amazing brands in this management role. I am grateful and very excited for this opportunity. Thanks to everyone at iHeartMedia for making it happen!”


Jeff Austin Adds ‘ESPN 1320’ Sacramento Brand Manager Duties. Programming pro Jeff Austin is named brand manager for Audacy’s KIFM-AM, Sacramento “ESPN 1320.” Austin continues his current role with the company as brand manager for sports talk outlets KFXX-AM “1080 The Fan” and KMTT-AM “910 ESPN” in Portland. He assumes the duties from Danny Freisinger, who was recently promoted to director of sports for Audacy’s 2400Sports podcast studio. Audacy Sacramento and San Francisco SVP and market manager Stacey Kauffman says, “We’re delighted to bring Jeff’s ability to mold local sports brands to our market and have his oversight at the helm of KIFM. His experience managing two favorites in Portland will serve him well as he expands his role with us, and we look forward to watching ‘ESPN 1320’ continue to build on its success.”


WBZ-FM, Boston’s Tony Massarotti Named Color Commentator for NESN’s Red Sox Coverage. Boston sports media personality Tony Massarotti is named the TV color commentator for NESN’s presentation of Boston Red Sox games this season. Massarotti co-hosts the afternoon drive show with Michael Felger on Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub.” Massarotti also hosts “The Baseball Hour with Tony Mazz” on “98.5 The Sports Hub” during the baseball season. He served as the Red Sox beat writer for the Boston Herald from 1994-2008. He’s also the co-author of Big Papi: My Story of Big Dreams and Big Hits, with David Ortiz, and Knuckler: My Life with Baseball’s Most Confounding Pitch, written with Tim Wakefield. Massarotti says, “I’m extremely grateful for this opportunity, but it was obviously a unique circumstance that required the sacrifices and cooperation of many people. I can’t say enough about the support and open-mindedness of the people at Beasley Media Group, The Sports Hub, NESN and the Red Sox for their parts in making this work. In all my time reporting on and talking about baseball, I can’t ever remember being more excited about an approaching Boston baseball season than I am for this one.”


WSB, Atlanta Celebrates 100 Years of Service. Atlanta news/talk WSB-AM is celebrating its 100th anniversary serving the market today (3/15). Cox Media Group says its flagship brand, WSB Radio, broadcast across the airwaves for the first time on March 15, 1922 and was the first radio station in the Southeast. The station’s call stood for “Welcome South Brother.” CMG says the station was soon nicknamed The Voice of the South and today continues delivering the news, weather, sports and traffic that matter to listeners while giving back to the Atlanta community. The company adds, “WSB expanded in 2010 to a full-time simulcast on 95.5 FM, extending its footprint across the metro Atlanta area. With its expanded reach, WSB set its sights on innovating its content, digital platforms, programming, sales, production, promotions and engineering, all contributing to the brand’s ongoing success and longevity.” CMG Atlanta and Athens VP/GM Jaleigh Long states, “As we celebrate this milestone, we are honored to have such a talented and diverse team who have served WSB through the years to help us remain at the forefront of innovation that keeps us connected to our audience and local advertisers. 100 years of community service is in our DNA and if there’s anything we are proud of, it’s the station’s rich history of uplifting the surrounding community. WSB’s never-ending commitment to innovation and embracing change will propel the us into the next century and beyond.”


Media Execs Spencer Brown and Charles Steinhauer Form New Firm Gemini XIII. The new company, Gemini XIII, is described in a press release as “the podcasting and radio industries’ new home for premium audio content, production and marketing services.” The company is being founded by Cadence13 and Dial Global founder Spencer Brown (left) and former Westwood One COO Charles Steinhauer (right). At the same time, Gemini XIII announces it has acquired The Infinite Agency, a full-service digital advertising agency based in Dallas, as well as Phantom Producer, an audio imaging service from Australian audio producer Jeff Thomas that includes web and mobile app user interfaces. Jonathan Ogle is remaining in his president role with The Infinite Agency and Thomas will continue to lead Phantom Producer. Gemini XIII is based in New York, with offices in Dallas and Sydney, Australia. Gemini XIII CEO Spencer Brown says, “We are pleased to announce the launch of Gemini XIII with the acquisition of two of audio and advertising’s most innovative companies, The Infinite Agency, and Phantom Producer. These great companies are a formidable launching pad for what we expect to be Gemini XIII’s growing portfolio of audio’s most exciting brands. We welcome the talented professionals at these organizations to the Gemini XIII family and look forward to serving our partners and customers with the very best in content and services.” Company COO Charles Steinhauer adds, “These two companies represent a solid foundation of talented people from which Gemini XIII will continue to build. We are committed to bringing new resources and capabilities to audio and to offer new and creative ways to tell stories in audio. We are actively exploring opportunities to complement these organizations to once again build and grow a new breed of audio company.”


WWO Audio Active Group: Radio Helps Reach More Swing Voters. According to data from Nielsen VP of cross platform insights Tony Hereau, “the addition of AM/FM radio to a political media plan can generate an extraordinary amount of incremental voter reach.” Hereau recently presented the findings to the American Association of Political Consultants in a report called, “The 10% Solution: Optimizing the Political Media Plan with Radio to Reach Swing Voters.” Some of the key findings in his report include: 1) 45% of voters are zero/light TV viewers who are impossible to reach with TV ads: Nielsen finds there has been a sharp increase in voters who watch little or no TV; 2) The combination of connected TV and AM/FM radio can reach voters who are zero/light TV viewers: AM/FM radio reaches 82% of zero/light TV voters. Connected TV reaches 62% of zero/light TV voters. Combined, CTV and AM/FM radio can significantly supplement the political media plan; 3) Zero/light TV voters reached by AM/FM radio are younger, upscale, and more likely to have kids; 4) AM/FM radio is a rich source of swing voters: 40% to 50% of AM/FM radio programming format audiences are swing voters, according to Nielsen; and 5) AM/FM radio advertising was the untold secret ingredient to Glenn Youngkin’s Virginia gubernatorial victory. See more from this post here.


BIA: Local Audio Ad Spend Forecast for 2022 is $14.7 Billion. According to a new forecast from BIA Advisory Services, $14.7 billion will be spent in ad-supported local audio platforms including broadcast radio and digital audio. BIA says the local audio advertising marketplace is becoming more competitive with more streaming services and podcasts. While the shares of local radio OTA (Over-the-Air) advertising is eroding, radio digital is increasing, providing radio stations an avenue to still increase their sales. BIA’s local audio estimate breaks out advertising revenue forecast for 2022 from each of the following local ad-supported local audio platforms: Radio OTA: $12.7 billion – All revenues generated by local radio stations for sale of time to either national or local advertisers from their over-the-air broadcasts. Does not include any advertising sold by the national radio networks. Radio Digital: $1.7 billion – All revenues generated by local radio stations from national, regional and local advertisers targeting a local market from their online activities. Includes display and streaming advertising revenue other than Pandora. Pandora: $400 million – Audio and display advertising revenue generated by Pandora from national, regional and local advertisers targeting a local market.


TALKERS News Notes. New York City talk radio host Mark Simone tells TALKERS magazine that his 10:00 am to 12:00 noon program on iHeartMedia’s news/talk WOR-AM “has set a new ratings record, getting the largest total audience (Persons 6+) of any radio station in New York, beating all of the 85 other stations – the only talk show to do that in this century.” Simone’s program garnered a 6.7 share for the two-hour period in Nielsen’s January 2022 PPM survey…..WABC, New York talk host Sid Rosenberg has a cool TV gig on the side. As reported by InsideRadio, Rosenberg plays Dave Busco, a soldier in a crime family, in the Amazon Prime series “Gravesend.”…..Salem Radio Network’s 24/7 national news service SRN News is providing live, comprehensive coverage of a rare “virtual” address to a joint session of the U.S. Congress by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tomorrow (3/16). SRN live coverage begins at 9:00 am ET anchored by SRN News White House correspondent Greg Clugston, featuring remarks by Zelensky followed by recap and analysis of the Urkrainian leader’s address. Additionally, the network’s nationally syndicated “Mike Gallagher Show” on Wednesday will not only feature highlights of Zelensky’s remarks but a special “America Reacts” segment as listeners from coast-to-coast weigh in with their instant reaction to the latest development in the four-week Russia/Ukraine conflict…..Cumulus Media’s Westwood One is again presenting complete coverage of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. Coverage will tip off with First Four action on Tuesday, March 15 and run through the NCAA Men’s Final Four on Saturday, April 2 and the National Championship Game on Monday, April 4 in both English and Spanish. Westwood One is also announcing the expansion of its coverage of NCAA Women’s Championship events. For the first time, both the Women’s Frozen Four and the Division I Women’s Lacrosse Championship will be broadcast nationally on radio. Westwood One’s women’s coverage will also include the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Tournament featuring every game from the Sweet Sixteen through the Final Four and National Championship Game, as well as every game of the Women’s College World Series…..Audacy’s Cadence13 podcast studio announces a partnership with creator-focused new media company Puck and the launch of the program “The Powers That Be Daily,” that brings listeners inside the four corners of power in America: Wall Street, Washington, Silicon Valley and Hollywood. Emmy Award-winning journalist Peter Hamby and Puck’s team of founding partners, including Julia Ioffe, Matt Belloni, Dylan Byers, Theodore Schleifer, Tina Nguyen, Eriq Gardner, Baratunde Thurston, and William D. Cohan, “pick up where the news ends to explore the story behind the stories driving the day’s headlines across Wall Street, Washington, Silicon Valley and Hollywood with a digestible and dishy 15-20 minute daily rundown featuring insider insights.”


Chicago Radio Legend Pervis Spann Dies at 89. WGN-TV reports that Chicago radio legend Pervis Spann has died of complications from Alzheimer’s. During his career in radio he served as a DJ and helped build WVON-AM where his daughter Melody Spann-Cooper currently serves as president and general manager.


Russia-Ukraine War, U.S.-China Relations, Gas Prices/Inflation, COVID-19/People’s Convoy, Midterms/Trump & the GOP, January 6, and Urban Violence Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (3/14). Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and the U.S.’s role in sanctions and arming the Ukrainian military; the U.S.’s relations with China as Russia asks Xi Jinping for military aid; soaring gas prices and the still rising costs of retail consumer goods; the leveling of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., the lockdowns in China, and the still-active People’s Convoy protesting mandates in Washington, DC; the battle for control of Congress in November’s midterm elections and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ wife Gini’s admission to attending the rally prior to the raid on the Capitol on January 6, 2021; the capture of a man suspected of killing homeless people and the arrest of an NYC man who beat an elderly Asian woman were some of the top stories discussed on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.




Talk Radio Revolution! Conservative News Talk Morning Radio Producer based in Richmond, VA. Emerging and exciting independent conservative talk-news radio stations/media network is seeking top-notch career-oriented executive for morning producer.

This position is full-time, based in Richmond, Virginia with unlimited growth potential.

The company’s morning show host is a nationally known figure who owns radio stations across the mid-Atlantic region. This is not a remote position, as the producer must work in the flagship studio in south Richmond, VA. The AM hours are 5:30 AM to 2:30 PM. The position requires solid radio production knowledge, creativity, perseverance and the ability to multi-task in the morning. The right candidate will produce the morning show, field phone calls from high-level political figures and live callers, manage the clock, run the ads and navigate through normal live radio issues.

The show host is usually remote traveling the nation. Once the show is completed, the successful candidate is responsible for all post-production as well as running the next show. The successful candidate must be very internet and social media savvy and enjoy a lightning fast-paced environment and work well in the sandbox with others.

This position offers incredible freedom of expression and you will not be micro-managed in a corporate-bean counter driven mentality. You must be able to work independently with little day to day direction. If you love radio but hate the direction our industry is headed with corporate empty suits telling you what to do every fifteen-minutes then we are the company for you!

We play :60-:75 seconds of classic rock music in the morning before each segment so you have to be selecting songs to connect with our audience. We are an independent network and growing. This is a conservative-talk enterprise with the leading America First hosts in the nation, so you should feel comfortable in that environment.

While our competitors are shrinking and laying staff off – we are buying and growing. Come join our talk radio revolution! We are an equal opportunity employer. Competitive salary. Please send a short cover letter and your resume to: – Include producer in the subject line. The base salary is $40-50K depending on experience. This is a self-relocation if you live outside of RVA.