Friday, February 13, 2009

Police blotter : WTKK's Graham gets arrested after traffic stop

After getting pulled over by a Framingham police officer for failure to stop on red light, WTKK's talker Michael Graham was detained, handcuffed and arrested early this morning for operating a vehicle after his driver's license had been revoked. Graham was observed and then stopped by Framingham PD around 5:30am after proceeding to make a U-turn on Route 9 as the traffic light remained red. The police officer ran Graham's licesnse which came back with a revoked status because Graham failed to properly cancel his insurance in Virginia where he lived prior to relocating to Boston in 2005.

While not discussing the real issue at hand which he termed "minor traffic infraction"(proceeding on red while trying to make U-turn on the busy Route 9 as he was headed to work at WTKK in Boston via MassPike) , Graham went on the air this morning addressing his run-in with police and his subsequent arrest. On his 3-hour show, he proceeded to blast RMV Registrar and Governor Patrick for not notifying Mass. motorists about their upcoming licesnse expirations. In his on-air rant, Graham never explained whether or not he actually cancelled his Virginia plates and insurance after registering his vehicle in Mass. in early 2006.

BRW Notebook :

More changes at WBZ : As if there was not enough going on at the local CBS Radio cluser and more specifically, WBZ AM 1030, over the last few weeks, anohter personnel move took place there yesterday. Station's General Manager/VP Ted Jordan announced his plans to retire to the staffers. Jordan who started as a sales person at WBZ back in 1975, he came back to the station in 1996 from KDKA/Pittsburgh. A year later he also added GM duties for WODS/Oldies 103.3FM. Jordan was with CBS/Westinghouse radio division for the past 34 years. CBS Radio Boston market manager Mark Hannon will now oversee WBZ AM, in addition to presiding over WBCN 104.1FM and WBMX/Mix 98.5FM. Baraba Jean Scannel who manages WZLX 100.7FM will add duties for WODS/Oldies 103.3FM.

Award Time : WKLB-FM/Country 102.5 has been nominated in the “Radio Station of the Year”/Major Market category by the Academy of Country Music (ACM). The 44th annual ACM Awards show will be televised live on April 5th from Las Vegas on CBS-TV. WKLB’s PD Michael Brophey commented in a press release : “"This is an exciting award for which to be nominated for Greater Media and Country 102.5 WKLB. To be recognized by our peers for our charity work in the community, ratings success, and promotional efforts is gratifying for our staff."

It's not over until the Fat Lady finishes all her Valentine's Day chocolates : The latest word on Sirius XM is that the satcaster could file for bankruptcy Tuesday (2/17) if it fails to come to an agreement with holders of its $175 million debt due by then. Charlie Ergen, CEO of Dish Network and EchoStar, purchased most of that debt to possibly enable a takeover. The Associated Press reports that a bankruptcy filing by Sirius XM would allow the troubled satellite radio company to free itself of high priced contracts, such as its five-year, $500 million deal with Howard Stern. Overall, Sirius has more than $3 billion in debt due in the next five years. Meanwhile, according to the Wall Street Journal, the radio satcaster is reportedly negotiating with Ergen, who is said to be seeking an agreement with Sirius that would keep the company operating and would allow Mel Karmazin stay on as CEO. Some reports suggest these negotiations are thwarting a potential deal with John Malone's Liberty Media which owns Dish competitor DirecTV. Despite reports that say Howard Stern could be out with a Sirius XM bankruptcy, Stern himself doesn't seem to be even a little worried worried(as it stands now, his Sirius deal will expire in 2010). "I'm not concerned. I think satellite radio is great and will be a successful business and it will survive." At least that's what he was saying before some of the latest developments. Meanwhile, Business Week reports that Mel Karmazin is hoping to renegotiate some of the more expensive Sirius XM contracts such as NFL, MLB, Stern and Oprah.

Nothing but Paul : Speaking of Sirius XM Radio, the satellite service will launch a limited-run channel devoted to the music of Paul McCartney, in celebration of his album recorded under the guise of his alter ego, The Fireman. McCartney's "Fireman Radio" will premiere on Valentine's Day and will air through March 13 on The Bridge, Sirius Channel 33 and XM Channel 27. The channel will feature an interview with McCartney during which he will share the inspiration behind his Fireman projects.

"Fireman Radio" is a commercial-free channel devoted to McCartney's post-Beatles music-making and will include music from his solo records, tracks from every Wings album and the three Fireman albums — 1993's "Strawberries Oceans Ships Forest," 1998's "Rushes" and 2008's "Electric Arguments."

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