Saturday, July 01, 2006

Random Weekend Stuff

Just a couple of unrelated items...

LAURA'S RESURGENCE: After being dumped by a boatload of Clear Channel talk stations over the past 4-plus years, it looks like advice talker Dr. Laura Schlessinger is enjoying a bit of a resurgence.

The controversial host - her program now owned by her own "Take on the Day Productions" - has been showing up on some bigger market signals owned by Salem.

The most recent... a move in Dallas, where she now shows up on Salem Christian teaching/talk KWRD/100.7 Highland Village TX "The Word 100.7". The station is powerful, though something of a rimshot - as are a whole bunch of other Dallas/Ft. Worth market move-in stations.

"The Word" airs her show live 2-4 PM weekdays, and it's not the first Salem teaching/talk outlet to carry her by far. Pittsburgh's WPIT/730 has run Dr. Laura for at least 2-3 years now, and New York's WWDJ/970 ("WMCA 2") has also been an affiliate for a while now.

Do we see her show eventually airing on Salem's Cleveland teaching/talk station, WHKW/1220? It wouldn't be a stretch. "1220 The Word" here seems to be quite happy with Dave Ramsey, their syndicated money advice guy with roots in Christian principles. A Dr. Laura/Dave Ramsey combo would probably work well for WHKW...

ANOTHER CINCY FOLO: There's finally a follow-up newspaper article to the announced Clear Channel AM changes in Cincinnati, where sports WSAI/1360 "Homer, The Sports Animal" will swap frequencies with liberal talk WCKY/1530 "The Revolution of Talk Radio" on July 7th.

The Cincinnati Post's Rick Bird gets a little more out of CC Cincinnati AM guru Darryl Parks, who gushes over "Homer's" potential on the 50,000 watt signal at AM 1530 - and who doesn't at all seem worried that a blowtorch sports format will affect the station which drives the entire bus in Kenwood, talk WLW/700 "The Big One".

Parks tells Bird that the company is still committed to the liberal talk format in Cincinnati - "for now" - though he's hoping that the format becomes less "shrill" and more "humanistic". (Observation: In all of talk radio, only someone who runs the versatile format of WLW - with a popular comedy-talk afternoon drive show - could get away with saying that.)

Parks says he still sees progressive talk succeeding "in the long run".

As for "Springer on the Radio", show marketer and long-time Cincinnati broadcaster Pat Barry tells the Post that they're just "excited" to be on the air, and they aren't concerned with the less powerful, but still decent 1360 signal.

He has a point - "Homer" has done well enough within the usual parameters of a sports talker, and the 1360 signal has never been seen as holding them back.

But we still believe the liberal talk format is on shaky ground in Cincinnati, and may basically have been saved by the fact that Jerry Springer has a contract.

The other thing which may have saved it...what else is Clear Channel gonna put on that fourth AM signal?

There aren't a lot of options for AM formats. With full-time local talk, conservative talk and sports already on the air, what else can CC do? They've already run through "real oldies" and standards, both formats which are even tougher to sell - ratings aside - than any talk format. (And there's already WDJO/1160, which picked up the old 1530 oldies format, as a competitor if they wanted to go back that way.) "Classic Country 1360"? Also an older-skewing format.

There are some folks who believe a Spanish-language station would be possible. It is one of Clear Channel's "format initiatives", but we have no idea if there'd even be enough Hispanic listeners in Cincinnati and environs to support it...

11 comments:

74 WIXYgrad said...

Even though she has the blessings of Dr. James Dobson, I don't think WHKW would be a good fit for Dr. Laura. I think WHK would be better suited. Oh what the heck, let her pay for the time herself and she will be on WKNR, where they always talk sports unless something better paying comes along.

Anonymous said...

Ah, Dr. Laura, she who has never quite been forgiven for saying a certain percentage of the population was a biological error. I think their anti-Dr. Laura site is still up, but I won't give them any freebies here.

As for 1360 Cincy, maybe if they went back to the "classic" WSAI, with less 50's and more 60's, that would work. This might depend on where WGRR is headed (most FM oldies stations are playing more 70's) and how successful 1160 is, too.

Anonymous said...

WHKW should do a 12 noon-8pm block of say:

Bill O'Reilly 12-2
Dave Ramsey 2-5
Dr. Laura 5-8

It would be a compliment to WHK and their conservative line-up, take a handful of people away from Rush Limbaugh on WTAM, and 1220 would still be able to do their bread and butter "preach and teach" format mornings, evenings and weekends.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the above post. I regulary tune into to dave ramsey and would love to hear Bill O'Reilly on something more than the 500 watts that WELW puts out. I could care less about Dr. Laura, but 1220 seems like it could do so much more given its power and lack of great AM programming.

Anonymous said...

I meant to say lack of great AM programming in Cleveland.

JohnAmrhein said...

Good to see Dr. Laura is making a comeback! We've had positive feedback so far with a Dave Ramsey/Dr. Laura combo...and it's worked on WPIT, so I agree that it would probably be a good move for WHKW as well...although I'd be happy to keep our "largest Ohio affiliate" status at WCER!

JohnAmrhein said...

Another comment on her placement in Dallas - I think that KWRD picked her up because they lost Dave Ramsey to KLIF, a higher rated AM news/talk station. I know he started on KLIF at the same time she did on KWRD so that's my assumption, though it could be incorrect. Anyone else know if Ramsey was on KWRD?

74WIXYgrad said...

An answer to the above question is that I do remember Dave saying he was on the word 100.7 in Dallas. In these parts when you hear 100.7 being referred to as anything but the Buzzard you tend to take notice.

Anonymous said...

Ramsey was indeed on KWRD. I can also say that there has been mixed reviews and many people don't think
Dr. Laura has been a good fit. However, you could realistically see more Dr. Laura poppingg on Salem talkers.

Anonymous said...

O'Reilly, while I personally like his show, doesn't get good ratings on most of his affiliates. A better show, and better ratings, is Neal Boortz. Many thinks he's a "southerner" b/c his home base is WSB/Charlotte, but Boortz is from the Wilkes-Barre area. More Philly cheese steak than pulled pork. Much more aggressive than OReilly. In the markets where Boortz is against Rush, more often than not Boortz beats El Rushbo.

Daisy said...

I can't believe that the "Open Letter to Dr. Laura" is STILL making the rounds via email and is up on blogs all over the internet as recently as June of 06. It's only been around for 6 years, and no one knows for sure who wrote it. So if she can make a come back and gain a new crowd of listeners who may not have been in on all the controversy, then more power to her!