TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Posts Tagged ‘WEMP’

WLTW Still Number One, WCBS-FM Returns to 2nd

It’s no news that WLTW/Lite FM is the city’s top-rated station. The September Arbitron overall ratings show Lite FM increasing its audience slightly to 7.2.

However, its cushion is slipping. WCBS-FM is back in second place, within .6 of the Clear Channel mainstay. CBS’ Classic Hits offering had an impressive month, gaining .5 after dropping to third position for August.

CBS-FM leapfrogs WBLS, which took a .5 nosedive to 5.8.

As for WHTZ/Z100, a perennial Top 5 participant, is fourth but fell .6 for the month. Its sister station WKTU also went in negative territory, also lost .3 to stand at 4.7.

It’s a steady month for Spanish station WSKQ, holding at 4.2. It’s rival WXNY saw slight gains to 3.8.

Erasing the memory of WEMP and FM News, Merlin’s Alternative Rocker WRXP jumped .5 to 2.1. As a news station, WEMP never eclipsed a .6.

Among current news stations, WINS was tops with a 3.9, although down .2 for September. WCBS 880 had a .4 leap to 3.5.

Read more

Mediabistro Course

Children's Picture Book Writing

Children's Picture Book WritingStarting September 15, this part lecture, part workshop course will take you through the process of outlining, writing, editing, and submitting a children's picture book. Taught by a published children's book author, Dashka Slater will teach you how to write in pictures, hook readers and editors with your story, apply the nuts and bolts of marketing, and more. Register now! 

WLTW Wins July; WHTZ Closes Gap in Second

It’s WLTW in familiar territory. Clear Channel’s Lite FM is number one in the July PPM ratings, released yesterday by Arbitron.

But in a rare spot for the A/C station, WLTW lost .8 from June. Thus, opening the door for sister station WHTZ. Z100 actually gave back .2, but finds just a .6 deficit from being the city’s top station.

Then there’s WCBS-FM, which commemorated it’s 40th anniversary in July. Overall, there’s not as much to celebrate at the home of Classic Hits. The usual number two to Lite-FM slipped .3 to 5.9. WCBS-FM, which officially ended its association with veteran jock Bob Shannon, tied for third.

The station joining WCBS-FM in third place is WBLS. The Urban station saw a .3 jump to 5.9. WBLS added KISS FM programming in late April, after the mega deal brought ESPN to 98.7.

As for ESPN/WEPN, it was a less promising month. The overall rating dropped .3 to a 21st-place showing of 1.3.

Rival WFAN, which started July with its 25th anniversary, fell slightly to 3.2.

The month’s big winner, WKTU. The Rhythmic A/C made a .7 leap to 5.5 in fifth place.

More from Top 10 after the jump

Read more

WRXP Officially Back at 101.9

The cycle is complete. WEMP is no more. The former FM News station, which returned to Alternative music earlier this month with New Rock 101.9, has also officially resurrected the familiar WRXP call letters.

Under Emmis’ ownership, WRXP had the reigns of Alternative from February 5, 2008, billed as The New York Rock Experience. The 101.9 dial position made way for Merlin Media and its “experimental” run as an FM newser on July 15, 2011 with a month-long Adult Contemporary stunting.

Insiders tell FishbowlNY that there is no doubt Merlin is committed to the Rock format this time. But before any mics are opened and additional talent hired, we’re told that sales are of the utmost importance at WRXP.

As we previously reported, along with WRXP back on 101.9, the station may eventually reunite listeners with former on-air personalities.

Most Popular FishbowlNY Stories for the Week

Here’s a look at what FishbowlNY stories made the most buzz this week.

  1. News Gone from WEMP, Alternative Music Returns, July 17
  2. WEMP Begins Phase as New Rock 101.9, July 18
  3. Breaking: End of Line for Merlin’s WEMP as FM News, July 16
  4. Breaking: WNYW Brass Meet for Greg Kelly Damage Control, July 19
  5. USA Today and MLB Launch ‘Sports on Earth,’ July 17
  6. New Yorker Caption Contest Features Cartoon from Seinfeld, July 18

Keep up-to-date with the latest FishbowlNY news. Click here to sign-up for the FishbowlNY daily newsletter, bringing you our articles each afternoon directly to your inbox.

Merlin Media Looks to Regain its Prior Identity at 101.9

That didn’t take long.

As we continue with the dream, or nightmare theme, that was FM News 101.9/WEMP, there’s word that Merlin Media, not surprisingly, is ready sever ties with its call letters. FishbowlNY has learned that Merlin has re-registered for the WRXP calls.

Those call letters would bring the dial position full circle with Alternative Rock, except not under Emmis’ ownership this time. A source tell us the “Back to the Future” moment won’t end with the call letters, as the company s considering ”possibly bringing back some of the old staff.”

On Tuesday, Merlin ended its attempt at FM News after just 11 months and atrocious ratings, with New Rock 101.9 taking over the airwaves, minus any jocks.

Only a handful of WEMP staffers were kept on, for now as reporters for Merlin’s Philadelphia station. Among them are former WCBS 880 anchor Therese Crowley, one-time ABC Radio anchor Hilarie Barsky, Brett Larson, formerly with WINS and WNYW, and Bill Edwards, former WKJY/KJOY program director.

Whether this group is staying just to help with the sister station, provide news within the music programming once the mic is opened, or Merlin is laying the groundwork for another format is unclear.

WEMP Begins the Phase as New Rock 101.9

It’s been more than 24 hours since one of New York City’s worst radio “experiments” officially failed. When the 10 a.m. headlines concluded yesterday, WEMP/101.9 had wrapped up its nearly year-long all-news with one “final story.” The anchor, Gene Michaels, was abruptly cut off saying, “You’re listening…” Dead air ensued for six seconds.

Those who didn’t have their radios on, or tuned to the live stream, missed a faux anchor delivering the final story for FM News.

“It is to announce that a format change is about to occur at 101.9,” the male voice-over person said. “In just a few minutes FM News will become New Rock 101-9. The final line of the final story is this, a special note of thanks to everyone involved in FM News for their passion and support. Sometimes just saying thank you isn’t enough, but in this case, it’ll have to do. Thank you and good bye.”

With the immediate switch to Alternative Rock, 101.9 returns to a format Emmis ran prior to Merlin Media’s arrival last summer. There is no definitive word that this will become the permanent format. There is also speculation that Merlin will move the new version of WEMP to Chicago. It’s too soon to know if Merlin will keep the WEMP call letters. We can only assume that Randy Michaels can’t get rid of the calls fast enough, and lose the bad taste that was WEMP.

We’re told only 10 people were retained as on-air talent for the new station. Until that happens, though, they will provide additional content to the Philadelphia sister station.

The first song played on New Rock 101.9 was the Beastie Boys’ No Sleep ‘Til Brooklyn. Thus closing the book on FM News 101.9 in less than 12 months. But it is not without precedent. Just think of Patrick Duffy emerging from the shower to a one-year dream season on Dallas. The dream of WEMP as an FM News station is thankfully over.

News Gone From WEMP, Alternative Music Returns

Staff meetings were held this morning at Merlin Media stations in New York, WEMP, and in Chicago, WIQI. Effective immediately, WEMP has flipped from its ill-fated News format. However, the surprise is, a planned News/Talk hybrid like Merlin is using in Philadelphia, is not happening.

The station is returning to its Emmis roots with 101.9 New Rock, an Alternative rock station.

The handwriting has been on the wall for FM News/WEMP to make a major change, after it was unable to get past a .6 in the ratings. Interestingly, a News/Talk idea gained traction when the station hired Mark Austin Thomas, a veteran of that genre.

Merlin Media CEO Randy Michaels tells All Access, ”It was a difficult decision to make, but after a year of minimal audience engagement, coupled with the format’s inherent expense, I felt it was time to make a change. I’d like to thank the people who poured their heart and soul into the effort and I wish them all the best.”

Update: FishbowlNY has learned from a source close to the situation at WEMP that virtually the entire staff has been let go, including management. News director Thomas, hired in May, and last month Terry Sheridan, brought in from WINS as newsroom manager, also was sent packing. We’re told a several younger editors, and a couple of reporters, siblings Mike Murillo and Michelle Murillo stay on, primarily to gather news for the sister station in Philadelphia. The new Alternative format began just as the 10 a.m. meeting concluded, although without jocks for the time being.

We’re told that the anchors Alice Stockton-Rossini, Catherine Smith, and Dave Packer are among the purged. However, Maria Garcia does remain. She has many years of DJ experience on Long Island.

Breaking: End of Line for Merlin’s WEMP as FM News

Merlin Media is ready to cut its losses as an all-news FM station. FishbowlNY has confirmed the upstart radio company, owned by Randy Michaels, is holding a full staff meeting at 10 a.m. Tuesday. We’re told Merlin is also scheduling meetings at its Chicago newser.

Sources tell FishbowlNY that WEMP will become a hybrid News/Talk format, likely modeled after Merlin’s Philadelphia station, IQ 106.9.

Someone with knowledge of the situation says significant layoffs are expected at the meetings.

“They’re expecting the worst because they’ve already seen the worst.” the source tells FishbowlNY

Ahead of tomorrow’s meeting, we’re told that the new format is expected to launch in September. There’s no word if the meetings will expedite the tweaking.

WEMP has had nearly non-existent numbers since taking the 101.9 frequency from Emmis last summer. The station has been stuck at a .6 in recent months.

With endless struggles to find the right sound, several key managers, including VP of programming/news director Liz Aiello, and Merlin COO Walter Sabo, were shown the door by the start of 2012.

In May, WEMP hired Los Angeles News/Talk programming veteran Mark Austin Thomas to take the reigns into year-two.

June PPMs: WLTW Keeps Top Spot, WHTZ Moves into Second

Without any fanfare, it’s a typical month for WLTW/Lite FM. The Adult Contemporary giant was number one in the just-released overall PPM ratings for June.

Lite FM saw its huge numbers dwindle from May (8.1 to 7.7). But the station maintained its 5,600,000 cume (audience).

A surprise at number two, where WLTW sister station WHTZ/Z100 made a nice .5 leap.

Despite only slipping .1 for June, WCBS-FM fell from its usual second-place perch. The Classic Hits format, now under the direction of longtime WLTW programmer Jim Ryan, finds a home in third.

It’s the second ratings book for WBLS since the Urban station gave a voice to several displaced KISS FM/WRKS personalities following ESPN’s takeover of the 98.7 frequency.

WBLS had a fourth-place showing, with only a minimal drop off to 5.6.

As for ESPN/WEPN, the all-sports station lost .2 to 1.6 in the overall ratings. By contrast, rival WFAN improved slightly to 3.3.

More ratings insight after the jump

Read more

Most Popular FishbowlNY Stories for the Week

Here’s a look at what FishbowlNY stories made the most buzz this week.

  1. Writer Quits XOJane to Do More Drugs, June 14
  2. Anna Wintour Admits Glorifying Mass Murderers Isn’t a Good Idea, June 11
  3. Patch Sets Records for Revenue and Traffic, June 11
  4. New Yorker Cover Pokes Fun at Bloomberg Soda Ban (left), June 13
  5. WNYW Airs Tweet From Newark Mayor Cory Booker About Relationship with President Obama, June 8
  6. Warner Fusselle, Brooklyn Cyclones, Veteran Baseball Announcer, Dies at 68
  7. Veteran WINS Reporter Terry Sheridan Jumps Ship to WEMP, June 10

Keep up-to-date with the latest FishbowlNY news. Click here to sign-up for the FishbowlNY daily newsletter, bringing you our articles each afternoon directly to your inbox.

NEXT PAGE >>