Friday, June 17, 2011

The River 92.5 celebrates 10th annual RiverFest

The 10th Annual Riverfront Festival presented by WXRV 92.5 the River and the Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce will hit Waterfront Park in Newburyport on Saturday July 16th at 1pm. Headlining this year’s Riverfront Festival is Mike Doughty joined by Marc Broussard, The Damnwells & Scars on 45.

Past performers include The Lemonheads, Blind Melon, Fastball, Matt Nathanson, Eric Hutchinson, needtobreathe, Sarah Harmer, deSol.

Catie Wilber, Program Director of 92.5 The River, said: “We couldn’t be more excited to bring you the 10th annual Riverfront Festival…it promises to be better than ever! Another great free concert with tremendously talented musicians."
BRW Notebook :

Picking up the pieces : WTKK 96.9 made a couple of programming announcements earlier this week.  The big one was Doug Meehan's official installation as the new afternooner(2-6pm). He technically replaces Jay Severin, who was scrubbed for inappropriate on-air comments back in early April(BRW 4/6). Meehan, most recently Fox25 morning news personality, had been filling in since May 9th. The second one was even less dramatic - syndicated host Michael Smerconish officially gets the night-time slot(6pm-10pm). Smerconish has been airing on the station since last November when Michele McPhee was bounced as a result of contract non-renewal(BRW 11/11/10). McPhee wasn't without a gig for long - she cracked rival WRKO 680's midday line up in mid-January(BRW 1/16). Smericonish whose national show airs live from Noon-3pm will also do a Thursday morning(8:05) call into WTKK's morning "Jim and Margery" program.

Programming moves : WROR 105.7's "Lauren and Wally"  who celebrate their 30th anniversary this September will have a new morning show sidekick to pick on as of Monday(6/20). The station announced that it has hired former Boston Herald columnist Lauren Beckham Falcone as a replacement for longtime news personality Sue Cope who moved to Cleveland in early May. Falcone auditioned the very first week after Cope's departure. Other candidates included veteran radio personality Amy Brooks and comedienne Sue Costello.

Get the DuckBoats ready! : Boston Globe's Chad Finn reports on Bruins' radio play-by-play voice Dave Goucher whose call of the Bruins' Stanley Cup Final Game 7 win on SportsHub 98.5 forever puts him into the legendary announcer status category around these parts. The epic game was also simulcast on sister station WBZ 1030 which has very longrunning ties to the Bruins club in its 90-year broadcasting history. WBZ broadcast the very first Bruins game back to on Dec.1, 1924 when the B's squared off against the Montreal Maroons at the Boston Arena....Speaking of WBZ-FM/SportsHub 98.5, the May ratings that came out earlier this week are showing the 2-year old sports station capturing the hearts and ears of sports radio listeners as it continues to grow at supersonic speeds. BostonSportsMedia's has May's tale of the tape between SportsHub 98.5 and 20-year fixture WEEI/SportsRadio 850 right here. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

All Classical WCRB to extend its reach into RI via deal with Bryant University's station

Boston pubcaster WGBH-ownded WCRB 99.5 will extend its 24/7 classical music format into Rhode Island through simulcasts on Bryant University's student-operated radio station WJMF 88.7 in Smithfield. The programming partnership, announced this week, includes a power-boost to WJMF's 225-watt signal; the migration of student-programmed broadcasts to HD radio subschannel, mobile DTV, and smartphone platforms; and a summer internship program for Bryant students.

The complex acquisition-signal-swap deal between Greater Media, Charles Broadcasting and Nassau Broadcasting that converted long-time commercial classical WCRB 102.5 FM into 99.5 All Classical in late 2006 and subsequent WGBH's conversion from music to news/talk and acquisition of 99.5 in 2009, left a much smaller service area  and many nearby metro areas such as Providence without a full-time classical music outlet.

 "We are absolutely delighted to be returning to an area with so much vibrant cultural activity, and look forward to sharing it with the rest of the region," said Benjamin Roe, WGBH managing director for classical services, in a press release.

BRW Notebook :

Programming Moves : WRKO 680 adds syndicated "Real Estate Today" with Gil Gross...Mike 93-7 has recently added syndicated retro 80's show "FoundCuts" to its Sunday night schedule(7pm-10pm)....The long-running "Back to the 80's Friday Night" and its host Joe Cotese are relocating from Mix 104.1 to sister-station WODS 103.3 as of next Friday(6/10). Time stays the same - 7pm-Midnight....Local radio vet Bob Stuart signed off his afternoon drive shift(2pm-7pm) at WXRV/92.5 The River this past week. Stuart was with the River since format's launch in August 1995 and priort to that when it was soft rocker WLYT/Lite 92.5. The station is looking for a new afternoon personality...John (Boyle) & Jeff (Carroll)  are back on the weekday overnight schedule at WTKK 96.9 after David Stein's syndicated show signed off last week. The LA-based "John and Jeff" talk duo now air live nightly from 1am-4:30am.

What can Brown do for you? : Jeff Brown, currently market manager for Entercom/Portland, OR, will take on the same role at the company’s Boston station cluster, which includes News/Talk WRKO 680, Sports/Talker WEEI 850, Rocker WAAF 107.3/WKAF 97.7 and all-variet WMKK 93.7 Brown — who previously pulled management and sales duties at Entercom’s Norfolk(2003-2007) and Denver(2007-2010) stations before his move to the northwest last year — assumes a position last held by Tim Murphy who is now corporate VP/Digital Strategies and Enterprises. In his new job Brown will report to Entercom/New England Market Manager Julie Kahn who said in a press release, “Jeff Brown is going to be a terrific addition to Entercom/Boston. Jeff is a rising star who radiates intelligence, energy, and a get-it-done attitude. I couldn’t be more excited to work with my new partner going forward.” Brown starts his new Boston duties later this month.

Back in the saddle again? : Former WRKO 680 morning host and ex-political hack Peter Blute has left his morning gig at WCRN 830 last Friday.  The former two-term congressman and disgraced Massport head is rumored to be considering a run for Senator Scott Brown's seat in 2012.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Beyond Bejing : WILD becomes CRI's window on the world

Starting today, WILD 1090 is taking world news from a Chinese perspective, more specifically China Radio International (CRI), featuring news, music, language lessons and human interest stories from China live from Beijing. CRI which is leasing airtime on WILD's daytime only-signal will be heard every day from sunup to sunset. 

WILD is owned by Maryland-based Radio One and has been featuring syndicated news/talk programing geared toward African-American audience since January 2006.
WILD is the second US station to turn its entire broadcast day schedule over to China's state-owned radio network. Last winter, KGBC 1540 in Houston/Galveston began airing CRI's 24/7 feed on Jan.1, 2010. The CRI network has purchased blocks of time on US stations since 1993. In Boston, it has previously aired on WBIX 1060 and WUNR 1600.

As reported in the Washington Post last April, China's ambitious $6.6 billion global re-imaging strategy itself is going to take it against the not-so positive views of the country painted on CNN's, FOX's and MSNBC's of the world.