news INSIDE >> Wednesday, January 23, 2013

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news INSIDE >> Wednesday, January 23, 2013

NEWS Wednesday, January 23, 2013artists like Taylor Swift and Tim McGraw, says no country FM in New York has been a hole in the hearts of country fans fortoo long. “The format is much more aligned with a wider sonic landscape that is better suited to New York than past eras,”Borchetta says.Nash FM may usher in format changes beyond the Big Apple. With 83 country stations already, Cumulus Media couldadd to its roster. “We’ll be opportunistic,” CEO Lew Dickey says. “We have a unique position in this format and we’re goingto leverage it.” In the meantime more stations will roll out the “Nash FM” brand. Some will use it as their handle, others withstrong local positions like “99.5 The Wolf” KPLX, Dallas will refer to themselves as a “Nash station.” Some Cumulus countryoutlets will carry the 24/7 Nash FM programming, but many others will pick up vignettes, weekend programming and livemusic events. “The presence of the brand will be felt on all of our country stations,” Dickey says. To keep the format underwraps for the past four months, Cumulus didn’t hire any personalities. That process has now begun.Will Cumulus now come to the rescue of rock listeners? Before it settled on country for its newly-acquired FM signal,Cumulus Media looked at several other formats holes in the New York market. Besides country, a current-based rock stationwas also on its list since that format is also missing from the dial. The company isn’t discussing its plans, but Cumulusmay have a “step two” in its New York market reset. Several just-filed domain names hint the move-in AC WFAS-FM (103.9)may have a format change in its future. Cumulus has registered URLs including 1039WRXP.com and WRXP1039.com thatsuggest the call letters that were last associated with modern rock in the New York market could be in for a new life. The FCChas cleared moving WFAS-FM from its current tower site in White Plains into New York City, covering most of Manhattan,Queens and adjoining areas from a site in the Bronx. That would give the Class A signal a reach of about 11 million people.Even for “The Big One,” AM alone isn’t enough. As far as signals go they don’t come muchbigger than Cincinnati clear channel WLW (700). It covers 38 states and Canada. But for eventhe top-rated station that bills itself as “The Big One” an AM signal apparently just isn’t enoughin 2013. WLW has begun simulcasting on a translator at 94.5 FM via the HD2 signal of CHR“Kiss 107” WKFS. The translator has 99 watts and broadcasts from the WKRC-TV (channel 12)tower in downtown Cincinnati. (Clear Channel retained ownership of the stick when it sold thestation). That’s enough to cover most of the market’s urban center, although its reach into thesuburbs is limited. Clear Channel bought W233BG from Northern Kentucky University last Julyfor $40,000 and moved the signal in from Port Union, OH. Arbitron says WLW was Cincinnati’stop-rated station in the December survey with a 9.6 share (6+).New owner brings his own crew to the Sirius XM boardroom. Several Sirius XM Radio board members beat a pathto the exit door following the company’s takeover by John Malone’s Liberty Media. But Malone didn’t have to go very far tofind who he’d like on the board. The new additions are all Liberty executives: SVP Mark Carleton, VP Robin Pringle andEVP Charles Tanabe. Sirius XM interim CEO James Meyer also takes a seat. One board member who split isn’t likely tobe missed. Apollo Global Management CEO Leon Black reportedly hadn’t been to a Sirius XM board meeting in the pastseveral years. Regulatory filings show Liberty Media has bought an additional 50 million shares of Sirius XM stock, givingit a controlling 50.25% stake in the company.Sony/ATV-Pandora deal could have radio ramifications. As station owners cash their refund checks from BMI and enjoyfive years of lower ASCAP rates — both thanks to new deals cut with the radio industry — there’s a potential new cloudon the royalty horizon. Pandora’s agreement to pay more in publishing rights to Sony/ATV may be a hint of what’s to comefor radio. Pandora will reportedly pay 25% more to Sony/ATV after the publisher pulled out of ASCAP and BMI and begannegotiating directly with webcasters. The fact that Pandora will feel the pinch of higher rates isn’t surprising — the publishingMORE NEWS >> INSIDERADIO.COM PAGE 2

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