Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Random Tuesday Stuff

Just going through our "to do" list, with news and comment (no, not involving Paul Harvey)...there's still more, that we'll get to later tonight...

KISSED OFF?: It looks like Clear Channel Youngstown top 40 WAKZ/95.9 "Kiss FM" is the latest CC Ohio top 40 station going a different direction in morning drive.

On the heels of sister Cincinnati "Kiss" outlet WKFS/107.1, WAKZ appears to be ending its relationship with Los Angeles-based Sean Valentine, the afternoon driver at L.A.'s original "Kiss FM" who has been voicetracking a morning drive show for other stations.

"Valentine in the Morning" has been taken off the WAKZ web page, and a new live counter touts a change coming - from the timer - Monday morning at 6 AM...complete with a series of question marks as the header to the item.

Rumblings - as of yet not even remotely confirmed - are pointing to a possible clearance for WNCI/97.9 Columbus-based syndicated morning show "Dave and Jimmy". As we said, not confirmed, as we haven't heard anything even quasi-official that it's happening. The show is carried in two other regional markets, Louisville and Lexington, in addition to its home base.

WKNR'S NEW ERA, REDUX: Long-time WKNR/850 sports talk show host Greg Brinda has been batted around the station's schedule over the years like a baseball being hit by Grady Sizemore.

In just the past 2 years, Brinda's solo-hosted mid-mornings, hosted the same slot with a co-host (Kendall Lewis), sent to do special programming and Indians post-game hosting, brought back to mid-mornings as a solo host (Bruce Drennan's troubles), bounced down to evenings, and finally, back to Indians post-game show work.

But in all that movement, he stayed on 850 - or 1220, the station's original frequency.

Not Monday.

Because Good Karma's flagship sports station was staying with regular programming during the Cleveland Indians daytime season opener with Chicago, "The Miller Lite 10th Inning Show" had to be moved...to Siberia.

OK, so that's not the city of license of the company's 1000-watt original station, daytimer WWGK/1540, now operating as a sister station to WKNR as "Cleveland's AM 1540, KNR2".

But 1540 AM was where you had to go to find Brinda doing the very first Indians postgame show for WKNR, as the 50,000 watt powerhouse aired the opening of "Munch on Sports" with new afternoon drive host Mark "Munch" Bishop, and Kenny Roda's regular show (now in evenings) - with the host live in Atlanta for the NCAA championship of men's basketball. We'll spare you the result, if you haven't seen it already.

We almost felt sorry for Brinda, who sounded like his volume was turned up to 11 (Spinal Tap reference), and got no calls that we heard.

And we're pretty sure at least a portion of the show was heard on WWGK's 21-ish watt "critical hours" pre-sunset power reduction, which means you basically had to be driving on Euclid Avenue to hear the show clearly. From our position not THAT terribly far from the station's tower, we felt like we were listening to shortwave radio, with the signals of WXEL/Waterloo IA and CHIN/Toronto trying to mix in.

We know Brinda gets his share of critics, and know some of them are probably jumping at the chance to hit our comments section.

But we'll say this - he's been a professional throughout all this. He could have easily complained of being shuffled off to the lightbulb power sister station, but he didn't. He has taken whatever role he's been assigned with little complaining, at least from what we've heard.

And though his role in WKNR's future would seem to be much smaller than his role in its past, he soldiers on.

And as we listened to Greg Brinda talking pretty much directly to us and maybe a dozen others who were tuned to 1540, we couldn't get it out of our head.

We're making a prediction here - within a year, 1540 will not be "KNR2". We find it very hard to believe that Good Karma boss Craig Karmazin won't pursue a better signal for the station now officially anointed as WKNR's sister station.

One big reason we believe this: If "KNR2" is going to act as an overflow station for 850, it can't do so at night for a large chunk of the year.

By the way, Brinda announced that the "10th Inning Show" will air regularly on AM 1540 after Indians weekday afternoon games...

WHILE WE'RE IN THE WORLD OF SPORTS: OMW hears it is official, as expected - new Clear Channel sports outlet WARF/1350 Akron "Sportsradio 1350" will join the Columbus Blue Jackets radio network.

The NHL action starts Saturday night on 1350, as the Blue Jackets tangle with Anaheim. (Mighty Ducks, right?) And our thanks to Hockey Nation for correcting us, again, on the two-word name of Ohio's only NHL team. We'll get it right one of these years.

WARF's primary sports contracts are with the Akron Aeros, who start off tonight on 1350 with an exhibition against the Cleveland Indians' other local minor league affiliate, the class A Lake County Captains, and the University of Akron Zips football and basketball teams...

AND A BRIEF STOP IN LIMA: This one is thanks to OMW reader Dan Baisden, who is program director at Maverick Media's WZOQ and WDOH in the Lima market.

WZOQ has flipped from hot AC "92 ZOO" to top 40/mainstream "Star 92.1", promising top 40 hits without rhythmic titles. The move pushes syndicated "Bob and Shari" to sister WDOH "Lite Rock 107.1", where local host Jeff Wittler slides into middays.

And Maverick's sister classic rock WUZZ/104.9 picks up the handle "104.9 The Eagle"....


bill said...

A little off topic...

While I am not a huge Roda fan I did enjoy his show. I checked out Munch's show yesterday and was pretty disappointed. I don't normally listen to FM other then college stations so I haven't been exposed to a ton of Munch previously. I really had a hard time not turning off the radio and doing something else during Munch's show. Granted it was only the first day so I will give him time and see if he is an acquired taste.

As far as Brinda goes I agree with OMW. While if I had to choose a host to listen to, Brinda would be near the bottom of the list. I respect the way he has handled the situation as well, of course if he wants to make a living he doesn't have much choice I guess.

This is kind of odd but the way I look at Brinda and his show reminds me of that elderly couple that have been married for 50+ years but are always bickering and you wonder why they have stuck together. Its like I am sure there is better but listening to Brinda is like a comfort zone and no matter how much I want to bicker (tune him off) with him, he is still around. heh, yeah that was a little out there hopefully you get what I am saying.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Munch, it was odd to hear him on lanigan this morning... he didn't say much, but was on the air... how long will that last

Anonymous said...

A "ton of Munch" just sounds dirty to me.

Anyway, it's "Blue Jackets," two words!

Terrestial Radio is Dead said...

How is Munch working for two different companies in radio? My how radio has changed. Glad to see that he is taking a job from someone else on WKNR. We would not want to give someone different a c hance.(sarcasm)

Anonymous said...

I, too, was wondering why Munch was on with Lanigan this morning. Sounded like he was coming down with a cold.

Anonymous said...

I agree about Brinda. Although not always the biggest fan of his shows, agree that he's a classy, professional guy.

Throughout all the changes at KNR he's maintained an even-keel approach on and off the air and just keeps on doing his thing - regardless of what timeslot or frequency he's assigned to.

Other observations in the local sports media scene...

Munch is a breath of fresh air in afternoon drive on KNR, although it wouldn't hurt for him to organize his thoughts a bit more. His stream of consciousness is tough to follow at times. The energy and enthusiasm are much needed though, and his approach offers a little more respect and benefit of the doubt to the local athletes and coaches than Roda's.

Bruce Drennan's new show on STO, albeit only two days in, is a shocking disappointment. One would think STO would've been a little better prepared to unveil their newest production - especially since they haven't had to deal with 24 hour programming for the past year and knew Drennan was coming on-board for a month now.

The production value of his show is that of a cable-access program. Although not the biggest fan of Cleveland Rants, STO could take some lessons from their competition at FSN Ohio on how to produce a television sports talk show. Drennan's show is the equivalent of a guy sitting at a desk talking with a still-frame camera on him. It makes Les Levine's show on Time Warner Cable look like an award winning network production.

With that being said I'll give it time, but it sure wasn't a good start for the newest endeavor for Drennan and SportsTime Ohio

Anonymous said...

Columbus Blue Jackets and the Lake County Captains on 1350? Now there's a ratings barn-burner. Come on Freedom Street/Lane/Road whatever the hell you are.

There's a better chance that the Pittsburgh Pirates will be battling out the KC Royals in the 2007 World Series than this EVER getting any listeners.

Anonymous said...

1350's airs the Akron Aeros who are playing the Lake County Captains. Ya know the team that ran their games on 50,000 watt WKNR last season.

In any event, it's not about getting ratings. It's revenue. If they can make a buck more than last year, they'll be fine.

Anonymous said...

Also, Anaheim's just the Ducks now...they aren't Mighty as of the beginning of the 06-07 season. (You can be forgiven for not getting the memo...plenty of others didn't get it either.)

~~nphsquaker said...

Any chance of Time Warner Cable adding Akron/Canton News (23) to the New Philadelphia Line Up??

Anonymous said...

Oh the WKNR that was owned by Salem, a religious broadcaster? Yeah they really knew how to program a sports station. The only reason they had the Lake County Captains is because they couldn't get the Indians.

Anonymous said...

Here's Greg's show times at WKNR 1220/850 since joining the station in 1991:

1991-1994: 10:00am - 2:00pm
1994-1998: 2:00pm - 5:00pm
1998-2001: 6:00am - 9:00am
2001-2004: 9:00am - 12:00pm (with Kendall Lewis)
2004: The 10th Inning, various fill-in work
2004-2007: 9:00am - 12:00pm (solo, took over for Drennan)
March 2007: 6:00pm - 9:00pm
April 2007 onward: The 10th Inning, WKNR Golf Show

- Nathan Obral

Anonymous said...

The reason 1540 has the 10th Inning for day games is so that 850's afternoon/evening line-up (Rome/Munch/Roda) doesn't get disturbed.

On KNR2, 10th Inning bumps Chris Meyers, which is at best a mid-level syndicated show.

You get more day baseball early in the season because of the weather, but once the season gets rolling, we'll see Greg doing pretty much 9p-midnight (more or less) every night on 850.

Don't cry for Greg, he can now hack...I mean play golf all day, he has his golf show on Saturdays, and 10th Inning is a highly promoted show, so it's not like he's getting buried in the wasteland.

Anonymous said...

Greg Brinda's Radio Golf Show is about as exciting as watching paint dry. Whoever thought Golf on the radio was exciting?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have the contact info for sportstalk radio 1350, I remember E e-mailed them when they dumped sports and told them I wouldn't listen until they got rid of the liberal talk, now that they did that I can't seem to find an e-mail to their stations. Any help would be appreciated, thanks.