Category Archives: radio

Tom Joyner is back in Chicago

The Tom Joyner Morning Show is back on the air in Chicago.  Reach Media which owns TJMS, reached an agreement to return to Chicago radio with SOUL 106.3 FM which is owned by Crawford Broadcasting beginning today.

Joyner buys his way back on the air here

Phil Rosenthal

All those fans who rallied around Tom Joyner when his syndicated program was knocked off Chicago airwaves abruptly last month no doubt felt a sense of accomplishment upon learning he had reached an agreement to return to local radio with Crawford Broadcasting’s Soul 106.3, beginning Wednesday.

The real work, however, is just beginning—both for them and for Joyner.

“Not only isn’t the signal as strong as we’d like, but the deal we cut with the affiliate is a brokerage deal,” Joyner said by phone Monday. “We bought the time, and that’s something we’re not used to doing. … But if all this outcry and support is with us when we turn this thing on, we should do all right.”

Having leased time on Crawford’s WSRB-FM 106.3 and WYRB-FM 106.3, Reach Media, which owns Joyner’s Dallas-based morning show, will be out selling Joyner’s “party with a purpose” locally.

Check out the entire article here.

Goodbye Tom Joyner, hello Steve Harvey Part 2

The Chicago Tribune has an interview with Tom Joyner relating to the TJMS (Tom Joyner Morning Show) getting booted off Chicago radio station V-103 last month.  He’s been replaced by the Steve Harvey Morning Show.

Tom Joyner calls firing from Clear Channel’s WVAZ-FM 102.7 in Chicago different from the others

Radio host Tom Joyner is based in Dallas but roots are in Chicago

Phil Rosenthal

Monday’s edition of “The Tom Joyner Morning Show” was typical, as far as Joyner was concerned. There were laughs, some solid information and encouragement. “And I talked a little bit about people who get laid off,” he said. “Because every day there’s a story about people getting laid off.”

Four hours or so after he got off the air, he got the call. One of that day’s stories would be his: Clear Channel pulled the plug on his show in Chicago, where his radio roots reach back to 1972.

Joyner’s Dallas-based syndicated program, while continuing to be heard in dozens of smaller markets around the country as well as online, was replaced immediately on WVAZ-FM 102.7, his outlet here for the past 13 years, by comedian Steve Harvey, whose show has been airing on WGCI-FM 107.5.

“I’ve been fired a bunch of times, but this was up there,” Joyner said by phone. “You know, I worked every radio station in Chicago, including as a cab dispatcher. I didn’t walk from one station to the other, I got kicked. But I haven’t been kicked in a long time, so this felt a lot different.”

Suddenly, Joyner was off the air in the city he still considered home long after he returned to Dallas.

“Tom has been a great partner,” said Earl Jones, president and Chicago market manager of Clear Channel. “This wasn’t about that. This is about the direction we have to move.”

Replacing Joyner, 59, on V103 with Harvey, 53, whose show is syndicated by a Clear Channel subsidiary, opened a slot for a new local WGCI morning program the company plans to launch Wednesday. The thinking is it will pay off long term.

Arbitron’s switch from diaries to Portable People Meters to produce the radio audience estimates used to set ad rates has been accompanied by rating declines for almost all urban formats. But it has produced new data on listening habits.

Folks in Chicago are still ticked off but you can listen to the TJMS on Black America Web.

Classic rock 94.7 flips to Fresh FM

Yes folks, another radio station is flipping music formats in the D.C. area.  Last year smooth jazz stations all over the country including Washington, D.C. and Baltimore were flipping over to other formats. You know how much I bitched/vented about Smooth Jazz 105.9 flipping to the oldies format last year. Now I’m reading that 94.7 WTGB will flip from classic rock to the hot adult contemporary format. The station will be called 94.7 Fresh FM.

D.C. Radio’s Last Rock Overturned
DJ Cerphe Signs Off as ‘Classic’ WTGB Switches to Pop

By Paul Farhi
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 4, 2009; A01

No more Zeppelin. No more Skynyrd or Tom Petty or Rolling Stones. And not a whole lot more Don Cerphe Colwell, either.

Classic rock and the DJ who brought that music to local radio audiences long before the rock was considered “classic” are both fading from the airwaves. Beginning Monday, Colwell’s station, WTGB (94.7 FM, “The Globe”), will switch to playing contemporary pop tunes. With the demise of the region’s only classic rock outlet, the music that helped transform FM radio into a cultural force in the 1970s will become just another baby boomer memory.

Colwell — who has always gone by his middle name, pronounced “surf,” on the air — is arguably the voice of Washington’s rock generation. As an undergraduate at American University in the early 1970s, he began working part time at a little FM station in Bethesda called WHFS, where he explored records by such artists as Jimi Hendrix and interviewed such up-and-coming talents as Bruce Springsteen.

WTGB’s end closes a chapter for FM radio in the Washington area. Until the rock era, AM radio was the dominant force, with narrow, Top 40 playlists. But in the late 1960s and early ’70s, lured by the static-free FM sound, young people across the country turned in droves to the free-form, album-rock format pioneered by stations like WHFS. The music was introduced (and personally selected) by DJs such as Cerphe, Jonathan “Weasel” Gilbert and Damien Einstein, who became minor stars in their own right (Gilbert was let go by WTGB in October).

You can read the entire article here.

I have 94.7 preset on my car radio.   I like to listen to it when I’m driving around and running errands.  The main stations I listen to in my car are 94.7 and Magic 102.3. I’ll give the new format a listen to just to see what it’s all about but I will miss the classic rock format.  I read that BIG 100.3 plays a classic hits format.  I’ll have to check that one out.  And yes I still miss my smooth jazz station 😦

Tammy Bruce, the epitome of trash

Author and political commentator Tammy Bruce recently guest hosted for conservative commentator Laura Ingraham’s radio show and she didn’t take too kindly to First Lady Michelle Obama’s recent meeting with Anacostia High School students in Washington, D.C.



Bruce called the Obamas “Trash in the White House.”

You can listen to the audio here at Huffington Post.

From the March 23 broadcast of Talk Radio Network’s The Laura Ingraham Show:

BRUCE: But here’s Michelle Obama explaining to some kids what it was like for her growing up because she sounded like a white person, whatever that means.

OBAMA: I did do my best, getting good grades was always important to me, and it wasn’t because my parents were

BRUCE: It’s all about her.

OBAMA: — hounding me or that they had the expectation, it was just something that I wanted for myself. I wanted an A. And I didn’t care whether it was cool, ‘cause I remember there were kids around my neighborhood who would say, “Ooh, you talk funny, you talk like a white girl.” I heard that growing up my whole life, and I was like I don’t even know what that means, but you know what? I’m still getting my A.

BRUCE: What? What? What — what is that? And then she devolves into that weird fake accent, like Hillary did when talking to black people. What? What is that? That’s, that — you know what that is.

DAVID AFTER DENTIST: Is this going to be forever?

BRUCE: Yeah, that – remember nitrous oxide kid, on You Tube. No it’s not going to be forever, nitrous oxide kid. It’s not. Can you — can you believe that?

OBAMA: So do I need to introduce myself?

BRUCE: What a shame. That must’ve just ruined her damn day. “I wanted the A for myself, and I wanted to do it, and ooh, they said you sounded like a white person, I don’t know what that means, but uhh.” Huh?

Man, oh, man. That’s who he’s married to, what does that tell you? This is what we’ve got — you know what we’ve got? We’ve got trash in the White House. Trash is a, is a thing that is color blind, it can cross all eco — ecosocionomic kind of categories, you can work on Wall Street or work at the Wal-Mart. Trash are people who use other people to get things, who patronize others, who consider you bitter and clingy.

Here was Michelle Obama trying to encourage these students (lord knows D.C. students need strong encouragement) to do well in school and letting them know she’s been in their shoes.   It’s a known fact in the black community that black students who do well in school and speak properly are ridiculed by others in the black community. But what does this Bruce woman do? Ridicule Michelle Obama and then procedes to call the Obamas trash.

Tammy Bruce needs to take a good look in the mirror.  What will she see?  The epitome of trash.

Goodbye Tom Joyner, hello Steve Harvey

Speaking of the Tom Joyner Morning Show, it’s been dumped from WVAZ-FM (V-103) in Chicago and replaced by the Steve Harvey Morning Show this week.  Some Chicago listeners are livid over this move.  Chicago was the TJMS’s largest market.   WVAZ  is owned by Clear Channel.

Steve Harvey replacing Tom Joyner on WVAZ
Tom Joyner’s syndicated morning show dumped after 13 years

By Phil Rosenthal

Tribune reporter

March 24, 2009

Clear Channel Chicago is bouncing Tom Joyner’s syndicated morning show after 13 years on WVAZ-FM 102.7, moving “The Steve Harvey Morning Show” from WGCI-FM 107.5 to replace it beginning Tuesday.

Harvey will simulcast on both stations until March 31. Clear Channel did not say Monday what its plans are after that for WGCI-FM. Any change occurring on April 1 risks being interpreted as an April Fool’s Day prank.

“Tom Joyner has been a great partner with V103 for the past 13 years, making it difficult to part ways,” WVAZ-FM program director Derrick Brown said. “We appreciate all Tom’s hard work and wish him continued success.”

WGCI-FM has aired this incarnation of Harvey’s syndicated show since 2007. But he has deep roots in the Chicago market, beginning his radio career in 1996 at WGCI-FM as a replacement for Joyner, whose decades-long connection began when legendary local radio executive Marv Dyson hired him at Johnson Publishing’s WJPC.

“Steve Harvey is an entertainment and marketing juggernaut,” Brown said. “There are very few entertainers who have successfully tackled radio, TV, film, stage, online and publishing. … Being a ‘King of Comedy,’ nobody can beat Steve being funny.”

The Steve Harvey Morning Show airs on WHUR in Washington, D.C. The Tom Joyner Morning Show airs on WMMJ 102.3 here in D.C. I tried listening to Steve Harvey a few times and I just couldn’t get into his show.   He’s a little too country for my taste.  The show didn’t impress me that much compared to the TJMS.  I’ve previously stated my views about the TJMS and how sometimes they get on my nerves.  When Smooth Jazz 105.9 was still around (damn I still miss that station), I use to switch over to them when the TJMS got on my nerves.  It was nice to have a different radio station to listen to.  Now I just listen to my cds, my gigabeat or Pandora.

Van Niece Johnson

At work I usually pop in a cd in my cd player or I switch over to Pandora after 10:00am.  But I kept my radio on 102.3 and heard a voice that surprised me.  Former Smooth Jazz 105.9 radio personality Van Niece Johnson was on the air at Magic 102.3.   Usually Olivia Fox is on at that time but Van Niece was sitting in for her this morning.  It was so nice to hear Van Niece’s voice on the radio again.

Smooth Jazz 105.9 is gone Part 2

It’s Sunday morning and I’m still ticked off about the disappearance of Smooth Jazz 105.9. As most of it’s listeners know by now Smooth Jazz 105.9 became True Oldies 105.9 Friday afternoon. Due to a $848 million dollar loss in the 4th quarter, Citadel Broadcasting, which owns WJZW and many other radio stations all over the country, went on a rampage and fired various radio personalities and changed radio formats all over the country.

Citadel yesterday also dropped its declining “smooth jazz” programming on WMAL’s sister station WJZW (105.9 FM) and replaced the format with oldies from the 1960s and ’70s (the first song to announce the switch: Aretha Franklin’s “Respect”). The station will now call itself “True Oldies 105.9.” All of WJZW’s on-air personalities were let go as a result of the change.

The company laid off about a dozen employees at Citadel’s three local stations, including WJZW, WMAL and WRQX (107.3 FM), which will continue to play contemporary pop music.

I don’t listen to WMAL, a local talk radio station, but I read that they fired long time host Chris Core. And it’s not like he received some sort of notice. He was fired after completing his morning show on Friday. Talk about cold hearted.

Strapped Owner Fires WMAL Host Chris Core

By Paul Farhi
Washington Post Staff Writer

After more than three decades on Washington radio station WMAL, Chris Core’s career there came to an abrupt end yesterday.

Core, a genial talk-show host, had just completed his morning program when station managers told him that the shift would be his last. He was let go without a chance to say farewell to listeners, who have heard him on WMAL (630 AM) since 1974. Core, 59, was the longest-running personality on Washington radio, beating WPGC-FM morning man Donnie Simpson by three years.

Core’s dismissal was part of a massive cost-cutting campaign ordered yesterday by WMAL’s troubled parent company, Citadel Broadcasting.

Looks like Citadel went into panic mode after seeing their 4th quarter numbers. Check this out.

Citadel, based in Las Vegas and New York, until recently operated stations in smaller cities. It vaulted into radio’s top ranks last June by buying 22 big-city stations, including WMAL, from the Walt Disney Co. in a $2.7 billion deal.

But with the ailing economy and relentless competition for listeners from digital devices of all kinds, Citadel, and the industry generally, has been in steady decline. The company yesterday surprised analysts by reporting a fourth-quarter loss of $848 million ($3.24 per share), compared with a net loss of $1.1 million (one penny per share) during the same quarter in 2006. Its annual loss was $1.29 billion ($6.61), compared with a loss of $48 million (43 cents) the year before.

As evidence of how much its fortunes — and perhaps the radio business — have shrunk, Citadel’s entire stock-market value yesterday dipped under $300 million, a fraction of the value of its giant station purchase completed just eight months ago.

Why oh why did they have to buy all those big city radio stations? The Washington, D.C. area wasn’t the only area to see mass firings at radio stations. Radio announcers at Citadel owned stations in Atlanta and Chicago also suffered job losses.

Anyway, with the loss of Smooth Jazz I have to find a new station to wake up to during the weekday mornings. I have my radio alarm setup to 105.9. I liked waking up to soft soothing music. Where in the hell will I find that now? There’s a Smooth Jazz station in Baltimore, Smooth Jazz 104.3 but I can’t get that station on my radio. Baltimore stations came through very clearly when I was living in Beltsville and Silver Spring. But living in Upper Marlboro, forget it.

The smooth jazz format was considered a success through much of its 14 year run in Washington. It drew an unusually mixed audience, with a nearly 50-50 split racially, which is almost unheard of in the highly segregated world of radio.

I really feel for the former radio announcers at Smooth Jazz 105.9. With the exception of Ramsey Lewis (he has a job), who’s Ramsey Lewis Morning Show is simulcast on almost 20 smooth jazz stations, I hope the other announcers won’t have a problem finding new jobs. I had no idea Ramsey’s morning show was actually coming from Smooth Jazz WNUA 95.5 in Chicago.

Like I stated in my previous post I’ll probably be listening to my mp3 player more often, especially at work. I’m hoping that another station will pick up on the smooth jazz format in the D.C. area. RIP Smooth Jazz 105.9.

Smooth Jazz 105.9 is gone

I couldn’t believe it. I turned to Smooth Jazz 105.9 around 4:00pm this afternoon at work and heard a song that I never heard on the station before. After doing some listening I noticed they mentioned that the station is now True Oldies 105.9. WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was pissed. Why did one of my favorite radio stations have to disappear? I wonder if the ratings weren’t so good. I did a google and found this at Wikipedia.

Format Change

At 3:00 p.m. on February 29, 2008, Citadel Broadcasting changed the format of WJZW to oldies and moved the former “smooth jazz” format to the HD-2 channel. The first song on the new format was “Respect” by Aretha Franklin and, at least initially, no live on-air talent will be utilized. Before the change, a brief statement was read thanking the staff and listeners of Smooth Jazz 105.9.

Here’s a little more info I found.

Citadel’s Suleman Makes Management Changes

Mike Stern, Radio and Records

FEBRUARY 29, 2008 –

After Citadel Broadcasting reported a tough fourth quarter Friday, Farid Suleman, chairman and CEO vowed company-wide “management changes, format changes, programming changes and self-management changes.”

The company began instituting changes just hours after attributing losses to lower revenue in the group’s biggest market, including San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Chicgo, Atlanta, New York, Birmingham, Dallas and Los Angeles.

In New York, John Gambling and newsperson John Webber have exited talk WABC-AM. Curtis Sliwa will take over middays on Monday, with a possible syndication deal to follow.

In Washington, there are unconfirmed reports that Chris Core exited talk News/Talk WMAL-AM. Citadel also detonated the Smooth Jazz format on WJZW-FM. The station signed off Friday at 4 p.m. ET with a farewell note, also posted on its Web site, thanking listeners for their 14 years of devotion. The shiny-new “True Oldies 105.9, DC’s Greatest Hits” has already appeared in its place. Citadel’s own Scott Shannon, program director and morning co-host on WPLJ-FM in New York, cooked up True Oldies in his basement lab. WJZW program director Steve Allan remains as PD, but the station’s entire airstaff has been blown out.

Well I’ll be damn!!! I’m not too fond of most of the radio stations in this area. During the morning hours at work I listen to the Tom Joyner Morning Show on Magic 102.3 but if Tom pisses me off I would usually switch over to 105.9. I try listening to 102.3 after 10:00am but they have a new radio announcer, Olivia Fox, and girlfriend comes off somewhat rough. I don’t know what happened to the previous announcer but her voice was much more pleasant.

I can’t listen to WPGC or WKYS. Not fond of their formats. I don’t listen to WHUR too often after the Tom Joyner Morning Show left WHUR and switched to Magic 102.3. The Steve Harvey Morning Show doesn’t impress me that much. I might give WHUR a chance after 10:00am. I’ll also switch over to 94.7 The Globe once in a while. Now of course there’s always my gigabeat. I like to hook it up to my iBlaster so I can listen to my own music collection at work. From the way things are looking I might be doing that more often.

Smooth Jazz 105.9 may be gone but I’m still keeping the logo that I have on the sidebar of my blog. RIP Smooth Jazz 105.9. You will be missed.

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