November 29, 2004
New Sounds for Nova Scotia and N.B.
*While we in the U.S. were busy celebrating
Thanksgiving last week, up in CANADA (where Thanksgiving
was more than a month ago), the CRTC was busy approving a slew
of new stations in Halifax, Nova Scotia and Moncton, Fredericton
and Saint John, New Brunswick.
Halifax, in particular, has gone many years without any new
stations, even as other Canadian markets of similar size have
seen their dials explode with more formats and signals, so it
was no surprise to see the CRTC authorize four new signals, which
nearly doubles the commercial radio market there.
Leading the pack is Rogers, which won CRTC blessing for a
new network of FM news-talk outlets in the Maritimes. In Halifax,
the network will operate on 95.7 with 22.1 kW; it will also have
outlets in Moncton, N.B. (91.9 with 40.3 kW) and Saint John,
N.B. (88.9 with 79 kW).
Toronto's Evanov group (the folks who own CIAO, CKDX and CIDC
there) gets a "youth contemporary" outlet (we'd call
it urban CHR) with 78 kW on 103.5. Global applied for 103.5 as
well, to do easy listening, and the CRTC says it will grant that
application as well, but only if Global comes up with a different
frequency to use. And International Harvesters for Christ Evangelical
Association will have 5 kW on 93.9 for a religious outlet.
In addition to the Rogers outlet on 91.9, Moncton will also
get a new French-language service, as Radio Beausejour adds a
new signal with 30 kW on 90.7 to its existing CJSE (89.5 Shediac
NB). Beausejour says the new signal will be "more contemporary"
than CJSE, which will focus on French-language country music
for older listeners.
Over in Saint John, Rogers' new 88.9 signal will be joined
by a new French service as well, with La Brise de la Baie ltee.
being granted 1.85 kW on 105.7.
And in Fredericton, Newcap was granted 76 kW on 92.3 for a
classic rocker, while Ross Ingram gets 25 watts on 94.7 for a
Christian music service. And Jack McGaw and Robert Stapells were
granted travel information stations in Moncton and Fredericton,
though the CRTC asked them to find alternate frequencies from
the 90.7 and 93.1 that they had requested.
Heading west, community station CFUT (91.9) in Shawinigan,
Quebec applies to move to 91.1.
in Toronto, they're mourning the death on Nov. 20 of Dan Iannuzzi,
the media entrepreneur who brought not only newspapers but television
to the Italian community - and many other ethnic communities
- in Canada.
Iannuzzi founded Corriere Canadese, still the most
prominent Italian newspaper in Canada. In 1972, the group that
was putting the new CITY-TV (then on channel 79) on the air in
Toronto asked Iannuzzi to provide multilingual programming for
the upstart station, which led to the founding of Multilingual
Television (MTV). MTV - not to be confused with the U.S.-based
music channel that wouldn't start for almost another decade -
programmed part of the broadcast day on CITY for most of the
seventies before getting its own broadcast signal in Toronto,
CFMT (Channel 47), which was eventually sold to Rogers and is
now "OMNI.1," still with multiethnic programming. Iannuzzi
died in Rome, Italy; he was 60.
*Heading down to the U.S., we start
in MAINE with another obituary of a broadcast pioneer.
Richard Burr Bronson began his career in the early forties at
WESX (1230 Salem MA), then moved to Bangor in 1949 to work at
WABI (910 Bangor). When WABI-TV (Channel 5) signed on in 1953,
Bronson became the new station's program director, and later
served as its general manager before starting his own advertising
agency in the late sixties. Bronson died Nov. 19; he was 84.
*A familiar MASSACHUSETTS voice was sidelined
this week for some pretty serious surgery. Paul Sullivan, the
10 PM-midnight talk host on WBZ (1030 Boston), was hospitalized
last Monday for what turned out to be a brain tumor. The good
news is that the surgery reportedly went well, and Sullivan's
already recuperating at home - and we look forward to hearing
him back on the air soon.
The latest chapter in the ongoing saga of WBIX (1060 Natick)
finds operations at the business talker continuing at least through
this week under the supervision of Chris Egan, the would-be buyer
of the station who pulled out after owner Brad Bleidt's financial
troubles became public. Receiver David Vicinanzo asked Egan to
continue to operate the station for now, while he negotiates
with Alex Langer (the former WBIX owner who still holds the note
on the station) for a possible takeover. As for Bleidt, he appeared
in court last Monday and was ordered to undergo a 30-day psychiatric
evaluation. And the Boston Globe reports that former
WXKS owner Richie Balsbaugh is interested in buying the station
once its current ownership mess is untangled.
Some bad news for fans of quality newspaper reporting on the
Boston radio scene: the Boston Herald has taken veteran
radio reporter Dean Johnson off the beat. Johnson's still at
the paper - for now, anyway - but the radio beat is vacant, and
that's a shame.
The FCC's Auction #37, for vacant FM allocations, wrapped
up last week after 62 rounds of bidding - and when the dust settled,
GBH Telecommunications' $3.927 million bid was the winner for
the new 94.3A allottment in Brewster, on Cape Cod. WGBH will
use the facility to relay its WCAI (90.1 Woods Hole)/WNAN (91.1
Nantucket) public radio service for the Cape and Islands.
*Only one of the three allocations that was
up for bid in NEW HAMPSHIRE ended with a winner -
Nassau Broadcasting takes home 97.3A in Jefferson, for $879,000.
*Nassau also gets 105.9A Hardwick, VERMONT,
for $762,000, while Vermont Broadcast Associates won 100.3A Barton,
format shift is underway at WARL (1320 Attleboro MA), the upstart
talker serving Providence, RHODE ISLAND, as "Reality
Radio" - which featured some of the more extremist talk
hosts displaced when WALE (990 Greenville) went Spanish - gives
way to "1320 the Drive," a more mainstream talk format.
(Among the hosts there is Charlie Profit, formerly heard on WARL's
sister station WXCT 990 in Southington, Connecticut.)
*A veteran NEW YORK voice has left
the Big Apple airwaves for now. "Dandy Dan" Daniel
had been off the air at WCBS-FM (101.1 New York) for a few months,
and now he says he won't be returning to his Saturday morning
WQCD (101.9 New York) segued from smooth jazz last week to become
"New York Chill, CD 101.9," with a mixture of electronica
and Europop being added to the smooth jazz playlist there. It's
running jockless for now, but expect the old CD101.9 airstaff
to make a return soon.
The man who gave WQCD's former sister station, WPIX (Channel
11), its call letters has died. Vincent Krug was the New York
Daily News' circulation manager in 1947 when he won an internal
contest to name the paper's new TV station. (The calls, of course,
stand for the News' slogan of "New York's Picture
Paper." Krug retired in 1977; he died last Thursday (Nov.
18) at age 92.
Heading upstate, WELV (1370 Ellenville) is changing calls
to WRWD, matching Clear Channel sister station WRWD-FM (107.3
Highland) - is a format change from standards to country on the
There's definitely a format change at WVKZ (1240 Schenectady)
- it's dropped its short-lived talk format in favor of "Real
Oldies" from ABC.
WAVX (90.9 Schuyler Falls) has signed on with contemporary
Christian music as "The Wave"; the Plattsburgh-market
station is co-owned with the "Light" religious network
based at WGLY-FM (91.5 Bolton VT).
In Binghamton, Joanne Aloi takes over as market manager for
the Clear Channel cluster, arriving from CC's Syracuse cluster
just up I-81.
And the New York portion of FM Auction 37 wrapped up in the
same place it was last week: Randy Michaels' "RadioActive
LLC" won with bids of $2.695 million for 97.9A Dannemora
NY, $301,000 for 92.5A Old Forge NY and $570,000 for 107.1A Saranac
Lake NY, while Double O Broadcasting won with $399,000 for 97.5A
Delhi NY; PPRE, LLC won with $144,000 for 96.5A Speculator NY;
and Iorio Broadcasting won with $208,000 for 102.7A Clarendon
PENNSYLVANIA, the Philadelphia Phillies are returning
to the 50,000-watt airwaves of WPHT (1210) next season after
three years on the lower-powered stick of WPEN (950). The Phils,
who called 1210 home in its various incarnations (WCAU, WOGL,
WGMP, WPTS, WPHT) from 1982 until 2001, were never happy with
the 5,000 watts of WPEN, and they've now signed a five-year deal
with Infinity to be heard on WPHT. (Except, that is, on Friday
nights, when 1210's long-running "Sounds of Sinatra"
will displace baseball to sister station WIP 610.)
Speaking of WPEN, the Greater Media oldies outlet has a new
PD - Michael Sommers, who adds WPEN to his PD duties at sister
WMWX (95.7 Philadelphia) - and a revised application to boost
its power. 'PEN now wants to run 50 kW day from a six-tower array
in Montgomery County (for which it already holds a construction
permit - but it now wants to run night power (21 kW) from the
WWDB (860) four-tower array on Germantown Pike in East Norriton.
In Harrisburg, Jeff Hurley arrives Dec. 13 as the new PD of
WHKF (99.3), replacing Mike McCoy. Hurley comes from Erie's "Star"
(WRTS 103.7), which is now looking for his replacement.
In New Castle, WJST (1280) has segued from AC "Star"
to "Just Oldies 1280."
*And since we've spent most of the holiday weekend tracking
all-Christmas format flips for 100000watts.com,
here's the list of stations that were doing the holiday thing
as of Sunday afternoon (though a few may flip back after the
weekend's over): WPLJ (95.5) and WLTW (106.7) in New York (the
first time 'PLJ's made the flip, and they're sticking with it
through Dec. 26); WODS (103.3) Boston; CJEZ (97.3 Toronto); WBEB
(101.1) and WSNI (104.5) in Philadelphia; WWSW (94.5) in Pittsburgh,
plus WLNH (98.3 Laconia NH); WGXL (92.3 Hanover NH); WEZF (92.9
Burlington VT); WSNE (93.3 Taunton MA- Providence RI); WSRS (96.1
Worcester, returning to AC on weekdays); WXLM (102.3 Stonington
CT); WBMW (106.5 Ledyard CT); WEZN-FM (99.9 Bridgeport CT); WKJY
(98.3 Hempstead NY); WTRY (98.3 Rotterdam-Albany NY); WUCL (93.5
Remsen NY); WYYY (94.5 Syracuse NY); WISY (102.3 Canandaigua
NY); WRMM (101.3 Rochester NY); WBBF (93.3 Fairport-Rochester
NY); WJYE (96.1 Buffalo NY); WTSS (102.5 Buffalo NY); WLEV (100.7
Allentown PA); WFEZ (103.1 Avoca-Scranton PA); WMGS (92.9 Wilkes-Barre
PA); WROZ (101.3 Lancaster PA); CHRE (105.7 St. Catharines ON)
and CJMJ (100.3 Ottawa).
*You're less than two months
away from 2005 - so why haven't you ordered your Tower Site
Calendar 2005 yet?
You read about it in the New
York Daily News on Saturday, and it's now for sale,
among other outlets, at the NAB Store - yup, that was the 2005
edition on the counter in San Diego - as well as being on the
racks at Universal Radio in Ohio.
And we're pretty sure the cover of the Tower Site Calendar
2006 has now been photographed - but we won't spoil the surprise
just yet, will we?
This year's calendar begins with WSTW/WDEL in Wilmington,
Delaware on the cover, ends with Sutro Tower in San Francisco
on the inside back cover - and along the way makes stops at WNBF
in Binghamton, CFNB in Fredericton, Poor Mountain in Roanoke,
KXNT in Las Vegas, WBBR in New York, Gibraltar Peak above Santa
Barbara, WDEV in Waterbury, Vermont, WRIB in Providence, WOOD
in Grand Rapids, KFJZ in Fort Worth, KYPA in Los Angeles and
the top of Chicago's Hancock Tower.
We're holding the price from last year, notwithstanding increases
in printing costs and PayPal fees - just $16 postpaid ($17.32
including sales tax to New York addresses). And as always, it's
free with your $60 or higher subscription to NorthEast Radio
Watch/fybush.com. You can use PayPal, below, or send your check
or money order, payable to Scott Fybush, to 92 Bonnie Brae Avenue,
Rochester NY 14618.
And here's an even better deal - We still have
plenty of 2004 calendars left, so how about this? For just $20
postpaid ($21.65 in New York), we'll send you both the 2005 and
2004 editions. It's almost like getting an extra calendar free!
(Or, if you just need the 2004 edition, that's still on clearance
at $8 - and if you buy two 2004 calendars, your third is free!)
So why wait until the last minute? Why make us wait until
the last minute? Why not let me park my car back in the garage
where it belongs? Buy your calendars now, won't you?
Don't want to order by credit card? You know the drill by
now - make those checks payable to "Scott Fybush,"
be sure to include sales tax (8.25%) for New York state calendar
orders only, and send them along to 92 Bonnie Brae Avenue, Rochester
NY 14618. (Sorry - we can't take orders by phone.)
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2004 by Scott Fybush.