While waiting to make an announcement...
ESPN 970: As linked here via the Ashtabula Star-Beacon earlier, Media One's WFUN/970 has made the switch from talk to sports.
OMW regular reader/tipster Nathan Obral up in Lorain County - apparently getting some good across-Lake Erie reception - tells us that WFUN made the previously announced format change over the weekend, now branding as "ESPN 970 WFUN".
The earlier report stated that the format change would move WFUN morning drive host John Broom's show into mid-mornings (10 AM-noon), following ESPN Radio's "Mike and Mike", with the impression that it was just a temporary move. Broom has been doing a news/talk/information show in morning drive, and we're presuming he won't slide into doing a sports talk show after the format change.
Outside his own program, Broom has taken over news duties at the Media One cluster that were formerly handled by Kathy Davis - who moved to sister new-to-oldies outlet WZOO/102.5 "Magic Oldies 102.5" to host morning drive there.
(And yes, the former 102ZOO is still carrying the WZOO-FM Edgewood legal ID, as we can find no signs in the FCC database that it's changed, or requested a change.)
Outside of Broom's show and a 2 hour weekday afternoon drive local show, plus any sports play-by-play coverage, WFUN will carry the ESPN Radio national feed. We'd presume the local high schools and colleges will get more coverage.
Most of this information is based on previous reports or educated guesses. Media One pulled the plug on the former WFUN website, and we can't find any reference to a new one in the "Media" listing on the other company sites...
BUZZED BY THE BUZZARD BOOK: Two very good articles by Akron Beacon Journal pop culture writer Rich Heldenfels and Cleveland Plain Dealer media columnist Julie Washington provide us an opportunity to A) plug that new John Gorman book about WMMS, and B) not have to say much about it. (Sorry, we're a bit lazy this Monday morning.)
"The Buzzard: Inside the Glory Days of WMMS and Cleveland Rock Radio - a Memoir" is the former 'MMS operations manager, program director and music director's personal view of the station in his 13 years working there.
We say that because Gorman himself says it in the "Author's Note" at the start of the book.
We haven't gotten our hands on a copy, but publisher Gray & Company - purveyor of all sorts of Cleveland-related books, including many media-related - has put up a sample online:
"The events described in this book occured between July 3, 1973 and August 15, 1986. All details are based on my personal experience and are drawn from my memory and my collection of memos, correspondence, and press clippings. This is my life as I remember it.
Memories are subject to distortion. To ensure the accuracy of mine, I called on many people who provided invaluable assistance. They are listed in the acknowledgments at the end of the book."
These kinds of books are subject to a lot of debate, since most of them are, indeed, "as the author saw it".
Successful, larger-than-life radio stations like WMMS often have at least two or three different "groups" or "clusters" of people with different viewpoints on such things as, well, how the radio station runs.
So, we suggest for anyone interested - pick up this book, and pick up (if you don't already have it) Mike Oleszewski's "Radio Daze", and figure things out in your own mind. Or, if you were there, write your own book...
If you'd like to catch up with Mr. Gorman, who's been a consultant in recent years, he'll be doing book signings starting Thursday.
The list, on his own Gorman Media Blog, also includes scheduled appearances on WMJI's "Lanigan and Malone" and on WNCX's "Mud, Mihalik and Mike" - the latter, of course, including that other author we mentioned above on Gorman's second local station, and the former pairing Gorman with local radio legend John Lanigan and co-host Jimmy Malone.
The Plain Dealer's Tom Feran is co-author of the book...
STREAMIN' AWAY: Cumulus' Toledo market FM stations have been putting up streaming audio feeds, but now, the Internet audio comes to one of their AM outlets.
And unlike the FMs, or even its sister AM station, talk WTOD/1560's schedule is actually "extended by the online feed"- as it's a daytimer that has limited hours, especially in the winter.
(Well, extended if you don't count the fact that you need to be online to pick it up.)
The "SuperTalk 1560" streaming audio not only will relay the on-air content, it'll carry its own schedule of syndicated shows that aren't heard on the AM side even in the longest broadcast hours of summer.
The weekday late-night schedule includes programming from Talk Radio Network, starting with a Laura Ingraham one-hour replay, followed by TRN's Jerry Doyle, Roy Masters and a repeat hour of TRN's Michael Savage leading into morning drive.
Weekend late nights will belong to replays of shows from self-syndicated financial advice guru (and new FOX Business TV host) Dave Ramsey.
Unlike at least some daytimers turning to this sort of thing, WTOD's online feed continues to play out of the automation as if it were on the air, complete with liners, IDs and hourly news and weather...
AND A CLARIFICATION: A clarification/update to an item we put in last Friday.
As it turns out, Clear Channel talk WHLO/640-sports WARF/1350 program director Jerry Mullins' father is in much better health than we had assumed - after a serious motorcycle accident.
Mullins will exit the stations at the end of this month.
Jerry tells OMW:
"The statement about 'family reasons' for leaving is not correct.
My father's accident did make me take stock of my life and my career in general. My conclusion: life is too short to kill myself working 60+ hours a week.
My dad was in a motorcycle accident on September 6th. He was in a coma for 2 weeks, the doctors told us he wouldn't wake up, (but) he has recovered 100% mentally, and has up to 6 months physical therapy.
He is expected to make a total recovery after he heals and wraps up his therapy. It's not a heartbreaking tale, it's a story of hope and overcoming obstacles.
My father just came home on Thursday afternoon for good. While I will be helping out my family as much as I can, I can't afford to take care of my father full time."
Thank you, Jerry, for the clarification. And we send our hopes and best wishes, still, for you and your family...