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Friday, December 16, 2022
TALKERS Magazine --- Talk Radio Magazine TALKERS Magazine --- Talk Radio Magazine
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Springfield, MA
Friday, December 16, 2022


Jack Heath is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. Longtime New England broadcaster Jack Heath is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Heath is host of the popular 9:00 am – 12:00 noon midday news/talk radio show, “Good Morning New Hampshire” heard daily on a statewide network of stations owned by regional independent giant Binnie Media called “The Pulse of NH.” The show features discussion of the topics that are important for the citizens of the Granite State in news, business, politics, and finance. Heath is a former news director and VP of WMUR-TV in Manchester and a former TV reporter in Boston and Maine. Harrison and Heath talk about the political and social nuances of New England; New Hampshire’s traditional impact on the presidential election cycle; how increasingly defensive campaigns connect (and don’t connect) with talk radio; the differences in broadcasting news/talk programs on radio and TV; and what it’s like working for an independent, privately held regional broadcasting company. Lots of takeaways! To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.

Audacy Reveals Talent Changes for Sports Talk WEEI, Boston Programming. After two Boston sports talk personalities – Lou Merloni and Mike Mutnansky – recently revealed that their current contracts would not be renewed, forcing changes to the daytime host lineup for Audacy’s WEEI-FM, Boston, the company

today issues an official statement on the matter. Now confirmed is that Christian Fauria will move from PM drive where he worked with Merloni and Meghan Ottolini to middays (10:00 am to 2:00 pm) working with Andy Gresh. Current midday host Rich Keefe transitions to 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm talk show host and pregame host for Red Sox baseball broadcasts. While Merloni exits the afternoon show, the former Red Sox player joins the station’s flagship coverage of the Sox, calling at least 60 regular season and 10 spring training games in the broadcast booth, and joining the station’s offseason talk show programming. Merloni will serve as WEEI’s Red Sox insider and make regular appearances on the station programming as team news breaks. Concurrently, Joe Castiglione, who has been a part of WEEI’s Red Sox broadcast team since 1983, will call 81 games in 2023. The permanent afternoon drive show will be Meghan Ottolini and Christian Arcand. All moves are effective January 3. Audacy Boston SVP and market manager Mike Thomas says, “These changes will further strengthen the news, information and entertainment that Boston sports fans count on every day. Lou grew up here, played for the Sox and has been our ‘baseball guy’ for more than a dozen years. His move to the booth will make our gameday coverage even better for Red Sox fans across New England.” Mutnansky, who currently hosts evenings, has said he will not be with the station in the New Year and expects his next position to be in the sports gaming industry. 

Salem Media Group Names Monica Rabassa to Lead New Miami Stations. The company announces that it is appointing longtime Miami broadcast executive Monica Rabassa as vice president and general manager

for its soon-to-be-acquired cluster of radio stations in the Miami market. Rabassa has been serving with Univision in executive positions for the past 20 years. Salem Media Group SVP Allen Power says, “As we prepared to return to the Miami market with a new vision, we sought a leader with knowledge of the market and a shared passion for that vision. Monica’s track record in Spanish-language audio across multiple markets and her deep understanding of the South Florida communities are evidence that she possesses both. We’re excited to have her join us to lead our team in making a positive difference in South Florida.” Rabassa comments, “I’m thrilled to join Salem Media Group as the general manager of its Miami properties. It is an honor to be part of Salem’s vision to offer high quality, unique and insightful programming to Spanish-language audiences and advertisers.”

Say My Name. Nationally syndicated weekend talk show host Walter Sabo – star of “Sterling on Sunday” – reminds us that during Top 40 radio’s infancy, the jocks we now consider legendary spent a lot of time saying the names of their listeners on the radio via dedications, requests, etc. “Radio has the ability to turn listeners into stars. Most radio shows squander this ability. Say a listener’s name and they become your fan for life. Yes, it works with doctors, nurses, lawyers — anyone in your talk radio audience.” Read more about what Walter has to say about this in today’s column here.

Edison Research: Joe Rogan Remains Top Podcast for Q3 of 2022. According to Edison Research, “The Joe Rogan Experience” remains the top podcast in the U.S. for the third quarter of 2022 – a position it’s held since Edison began reporting the top podcasts in 2020. Edison notes that “Edison Podcast Metrics is

the only podcast measurement service that measures the relative audience size and demographics of all podcasts from all networks in the U.S. It is the only measurement based on actual podcast listening, not downloads, and does not require an opt-in from podcast networks.” It adds that this list “is derived from data collected continuously Q4 2021 – Q3 2022, from surveying 11,275 podcast consumers ages 18 and older in the U.S.” The top 10 for the third quarter of 2022 rounds out as follows: 2) Crime Junkie, 3) The Daily, 4) This American Life, 5) The Ben Shapiro Show (up from #7 in Q2), 6) Stuff You Should Know, 7) My Favorite Murder (down from #5 in Q2), 8) Morbid: A True Crime Podcast (up from #9 in Q2), 9) Dateline NBC (up from #11 in Q2), and 10) Office Ladies.

Triton Digital Releases November 2022 Podcast Ranker. The latest ranker of the top 100 podcasts in the U.S. from Triton Digital for November (October 31 – November 27) is released by Triton Digital. This ranker

is based on Average Weekly Downloads and Average Weekly Users and publishers must opt-in for measurement. For the November 2022 period (based on Average Weekly Downloads) audiochuck’s “Crime Junkie” returns to the #1 spot, pushing NPR’s “NPR News Now” to the #2 spot. Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Ben Shapiro Show” rises three spots to claim the #3 rank. Other radio related podcasts making the top 10 include NPR’s “Up First” at #4 and Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Dan Bongino Show” at #7. See the complete top 100 podcast ranker here.

FOX News Digital Continues Dominance in Multiplatform Minutes and Views. For the month of November, FOX News Digital announces it finished the period as “the top-performing news organization in

the competitive set in both multiplatform minutes and multiplatform views, according to Comscore.” In the multiplatform minutes measurement, FOX News Digital racks up 2.9 billion, compared to CNN.com’s 2.4 billion and NYTimes.com’s 1.4 billion. Looking at multiplatform views, FOX News Digital tallies 1.8 billion, with CNN.com at 1.47 billion and NYTimes.com close behind with 1.46 billion. When it comes to multiplatform unique visitors, CNN.com continues to dominate its competition with 145 million, compared to NYTimes.com’s 102.7 million and FOX News Digital’s 97.4 million.

TALKERS News Notes. The final two podcasts of 2022 from Benztown president Dave “Chachi” Denes

are published. Denes’ podcast – produced by Benztown – is titled, “Chachi Loves Everybody,” and the first of the two new episodes features Chachi’s recent video chat from Benztown’s Los Angeles studios with Jeff Smulyan, founder and chairman of Emmis Communications and author of the newly released book, Never Ride a Roller Coaster Upside Down (Matt Holt, 2022). The second new episode features Tim Richards, a broadcast executive specializing in talent coaching and development. Richards has worked with industry personalities including: Mojo in the Morning, Mancow, Johnjay & Rich, and “The Morning Mess.”…..Nextstar Media Group’s WGN, Chicago announces special holiday programming to air over Christmas and New Year’s. It begins with “A Swingin’ Christmas with Dave Plier” from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm on December 24. That show leads into 26-hours of “WGN Radio Christmas Theatre with Carl Amari,” who has spent decades licensing and preserving classic radio broadcasts from the 1930s through 1950s. He has curated half-hour holiday-themed selections from old-time radio programs including “Miracle on 34th Street,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Fibber McGee & Molly,” “The Burns & Allen Show,” “Gunsmoke,” “Suspense,” “Our Miss Brooks,” “The Great Gildersleeve,” “Sherlock Holmes,” “Nero Wolfe,” and more. On New Year’s Eve, Bob Sirott revisits morning show interviews with musicians and singer-songwriters from 2022 featuring Graham Nash, Tommy James, Mike Love, Smokey Robinson, Peter Asher, Dion DiMucci, and more. “Bob Sirott’s Musicpeople Memories” airs Saturday, December 31 from 9:00 pm to 12:00 midnight. New Year’s Day will also mark a new time and expansion for “The Sinatra Hours with Dave Plier.” Beginning Sunday, January 1, the show will air Sundays, 2:00 am to 5:00 am…..WTOP traffic reporter Dave Dildine is featured among 11 Washingtonians in Washington City Paper’s “The People Issue 2022.” Dubbed “The Navigator” in “The People Issue,” Dildine spends his days “knitting together an array of rush hour wrecks and traffic jams” and reporting it on air six times an hour. Dildine says, “I didn’t aspire to traffic reporting from six-years-old. I was obsessed with construction vehicles and road signs, as a lot of kids are. I was much more interested in weather. But when the opportunity came about for a traffic reporting gig here at WTOP, a flagship station, it was an offer too good to turn down.” Hubbard Radio Washington general manager Joel Oxley states, “We’re incredibly proud of Dave and thrilled to see him recognized. The work Dave does day in and day out, is something that residents across the DMV know they can always count on to keep them safe, save them time and get them where they need to go. This recognition is a testament to that.”

The Economy, Fed Rate Hike, and FTX Collapse Combine as Top News/Talk Story for Week of December 12-16. The rate of inflation, fears of a recession, the Fed’s most recent rate hike, and the collapse of crypto exchange FTX come together as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was Twitter’s suppression – with help from numerous U.S. intelligence community members – of the Hunter Biden laptop story, followed by U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s bid to assume the role of House Speaker in January, tied with Kyrsten Sinema’s leaving the Democratic Party at #3. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this week’s complete chart here.

The Radio Sales Arena is Changing and We Are On the Leading Edge. The key to sales growth in radio going forward is multi-platform digital marketing. In the coming decade, “radio” will simply be the engine driving an increasingly complex and sophisticated array of digitally powered platforms creating endless packages and options for the

advertiser. The keys to success will be in branding that cuts through the noise and surgical targeting that delivers optimum efficiency for agencies that know exactly what they want. The Salem Media Group is leading the way and the opportunities for our sales team are endless. But, right now, we need that special individual who has the tools, the vision and the ambition to get it done. That one special person who truly “gets it.” Jerry Crowley, the longest-running GM in the nation’s largest market, says, “We want one outstanding seller who can take it to the moon! Compensation will reflect potential and performance – salary will range from 50k- 85k plus substantial bonuses and generous commissions.” Candidates should send cover letter and resume to Jerry Crowley, VP/GM, Salem Media Group, NY (WMCA 570am The Mission/WNYM 970am The Answer) at Jcrowley@nycradio.com.

Salem Media New York Seeks Production Director. News/talk “AM 970 The Answer” WNYM and Christian Teach & Talk “AM 570 & 102.3 FM The Mission” WMCA is seeking its next full-time production director. Candidates must be experienced and willing to work in our studios in Lower Manhattan, NYC. Interested candidates can apply directly on our corporate website here.

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Category: Front Page News, Industry News

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Name: Michael Harrison
Group: TALKERS Magazine
Dateline: Springfield, MA United States
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