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Edited by Dave Hughes. Send posts to dcrtv@dcrtv.com. Put "MAILBAG" on the subject line. DCRTV can't take responsibility for message content, although we attempt to edit for taste and fairness. Each posting is solely the opinion of the person who wrote it. DCRTV cannot verify the factual accuracy or authorship of posts. If you see a message that's in poor taste or unfair to someone, contact us and it will be removed. Messages that don't deal with local media issues may not get posted. We can't forward messages to posters..... Support DCRTV and the world famous Mailbag! Just a few bucks a month is all we ask! Click here or go to paypal.me/dcrtv.....

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Latest messages listed first.....
\/ September 19 Messages \/


Anybody remember Bill Gable at WEAM around 1970? He passed away yesterday, 9/18, at age 69. He was in the business for 46 years retiring in 2014. Worked major markets in the U.S. and Canada including CKLW. More at MediaiaConfidential.com, Audio at RockRadioScrapbook.ca and the CFZM Toronto website. -Thom in Mt. Airy (9/19/18)

I was watching Bewitched the other night on The Roku Channel and what did I see ?? An ad for Newport filter cigarettes !! Not a retro ad from the 60s but a new one with a bunch of 20 somethings puffing on their Newports and listening to hip hop music. OK I know cigarette and cigar ads are banned from TV but The Roku Channel ?? I didn't know one could advertise smokes on streaming services. With that said could you advertise marijuana on TV in places where pot is legal ?? I heard both yes and no. (9/19/18)

Dave's response: In 1970, Congress banned cigarette ads on "television and radio." But is Roku "television"? If you watch Hulu or Netflix or YouTube on a phone or a tablet or a computer screen, is that "television"? Is "television" defined by the source (a broadcast TV station or satellite delivered cable network) or by the reception device (a TV screen or any other non-TV device)? Who knows.....

We'll probably just continue to get brokered religion or ethnic programming on WUST and WCRW. But how cool would it be if the new owners put on programming that could actually attract an audience? Some missing formats locally include country oldies, non-political talk and music of your life. All-comedy (a format pioneered in this market in the early 1980s) could attract an audience. Even though we have 2 (well... 1.5) sports stations, that's another opportunity: 1190 has a decent signal and could function as a flagship for teams like DCUnited, Wizards, UVa, etc. Another dream scenario would be Bloomberg moving off of 99.1 and onto the AM dial, freeing up that frequency. Whatever happens, hopefully the new owners won't choose to follow WFMD's lead and broacast for the 18 listeners of AM digital. (9/19/18)

Hey "Tom in Frederick," please tell me how many times WFRE was below a 15 share the previous 10 years? I'll put it at under 3. It's now been under that mark for three consecutive books. Your comment proves that point. That's failing, especially for a monster station like WFRE which routinely posted numbers in the 15-20 share range. Poor leadership (or no leadership, really) the past couple of years....plain and simple. If not for the morning show, the station would be in serious trouble. Fred (9/19/18)

After Friday's Hatch Act-Logan Act confusion debacle, which he apparently shares with Larry O'Connor, on Tuesday of this week at minute 1:13 Chris Plante repeatedly insisted that "Daesh" (ISIS/ISIL) is pronounced "DAYsh" when every Arabic speaker in the world on TV and radio pronounces it "da-esh". Then I groped him and tried to get his one-piece swimsuit off. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/19/18)

/\ September 19 Messages /\

\/ September 18 Messages \/

The guy who wrote in and said WFRE's ratings have "failed" the past few years doesn't know what he's talking about. The last 3 ratings periods they've gone from 11.0 to 12.1 to 14.3. Not "bigly sad" as stated. Holding their own despite the ever-increasing listening options today. Tom in Frederick (9/18/18)

Your FCC "Regulatory Fees" are due on Tuesday, 9/25/18. This is fee every station must pay or the FCC can demand that you stop broadcasting. There is a increase in the amount every station must pay this year! This is like an additional TAX to operate......Congress has also approved larger funding in 2018 for the FCC. These are your tax dollars at work! By the way, when is Congress going to "Drain the Swamp" at the FCC? (9/18/18)

Can you tell us some of the FCC Regulations that have been dropped since President Trump was elected? Yes, a radio station no longer has to maintain a studio within their "City of License". (9/18/18)

I misread a comment about WYRE. It’s apparently broadcasting from the same tower or some other one, but not WRNR. -BaltoMedia (9/18/18)

When they say dozens of FM, AM, & TV stations total are off the air, nothing says this better than the last broadcast of Sinclair’s WCTI TV 12 in New Bern, NC. The last broadcast online appears to be even before the hurricane hit landfall! And more than 4 days ago. It appears as if they all jumped to ship to another nearby Sinclair station, WPDE ABC 15, further south which apparently is still on the air. Check it out… wcti12/com... The Sinclair Cares Fund is kinda funny. It’s really the Salvation Army Fund and there’s a disclaimer that they are just simply allowing Sinclair to make it seem like it’s their RELIEF FUND. Really? Check that out too… wcti12.com... (9/18/18)

I am told now that WYRE AM 810 is broadcasting from the WRNR tower in Grasonville and that WRNR is doing hourly local ID for both stations, at least during the daytime. I assume an FCC filing is pending. — BaltoMedia.net (9/18/18)

Another AM station who’s license should be yanked by the FCC. Someone mentioned it takes 10 years for the FCC to take action. Well Delaware's WDOV AM 1410 have been operating under STA continuously since 2008! Enough is enough. In one year they blame the FCC for not including an expiration date in the system. BIG WHOOP! It’s 2018 and they haven’t fixed an original transmitter/antenna array problem since 2008? The FCC hasn’t even sent them a warning level! Clearly they have done NOTHING for 10 YEARS! YANK IT FCC! (9/18/18)

Hurricane related station outages: Three AM radio stations are out in the Carolinas from the hurricane, but 2 are daytime only. The only major one is 5000 watt WAAV AM 980 The Wave. Will Cumulous have enough money to rebuild it? Hmm. Many FMs off the air and even a lot of TVs. Makes you wonder why AM radio is still important. It seems to survive almost anything. Many cell towers are down, but many still in service too, but none allow any radio support via cell phone. This is really an issue that the FCC will ultimately have to deal with even if they have to take on Apple and Verizon and ATT, which is unlikely. But every hurricane seems to reinforce this problem. (9/18/18)

RE: WYRE: If Empire is serious about doing something with WYRE, might I suggest perhaps going to block programming that could feature, among other things, a local music show, a bluegrass or roots music show, possibly even a folk music show; among others. (9/18/18)

If you play the Chris Plante podcast at 1.5 speed (to save time) he sounds like he's jacking while he's talking. His defense of Kavanaugh today was kind of lame: "she didn't remember the date, or where the house was, or whose house it was, and pools are very rare in Montgomery County." It's like he was never a teenager. I'm not convinced about who's telling the truth or who's lying, but his friend the Judge guy who says he doesn't remember the incident has written an autobiography telling about his alcoholic blackouts. Maybe Kavanaugh should go that route. I would like to know if the accuser remembers what song was turned up to drown out her protests at this party where there were only two girls??? Not much of a party in my book. My money's on some sort of prog rock. Then some crazy B called in to talk about how Holton Arms girls used to cut a hole in the fence so they could sneak into Landon School where she claimed the real horndogs were, when they could have just walked in through the front gate. And where did they leave their car? Holton Arms isn't right nextdoor. I just don't know who to believe, and I don't care but at 1.5 times normal speed. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/18/18)

/\ September 18 Messages /\

\/ September 17 Messages \/

Well my progrock on wpfw idea has been shot down by most of you so I stand properly chastised maybe I underestimated the donnie Frank Sinatra stuff and jim beyer Latin flavor popularity (9/17/18)

Dave's response: How about DC's version of Philly's WXPN on 89.3? Maybe WAMU or WETA could do it.....

There are plenty of reasons not to put a prog Rock show on WPFW, but the two that top the list are (1) nobody's listened to prog Rock shows in about 40 years, and (2) a prog Rock show plopped down in the middle of WPFW's current lineup would make about as much since as playing Catfish on TCM. Just because you're in to something doesn't mean it would be a wise programming decision. (9/17/18)

/\ September 17 Messages /\

\/ September 16 Messages \/

The McClatchy newspaper chain, owner of 30 newspapers in 14 states, is in talks to purchase The Baltimore Sun and other newspapers including the Chicago Tribune and NY Daily News. The Baltimore Sun has been for sale for quite some time. -- BaltoMedia.net (9/16/18)

The station is Identified as WYRE in top of the hour legal station ID. It is seperate from WRNR Grasonville. No on air mention of 810 by jocks. Another added note the station is on all night despite WYRE is a dawn to dusk license. Ron in Annapolis (9/16/18)

Amber Athey, the Breaking News Editor (who knew there was such a thing?) for the Daily Caller is at Peak Tan and looks just like Veronica from Riverdale. And a real degree, not an Ocasio-Ortez degree, from Georgetown. Ernt-y, ernt-y, ernt-y....Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/16/18)

Per the FCC, WYRE AM 810 has to be on the air as licensed by Sept 21, or the license expires. How they’re doing it makes one wonder. Their landlord evicted them. Have they made a settlement with the museum? (9/16/18)

Hey Dave how about a new section for DCRTV: “DCRTV Cartoons”? CNN’s “State of the Union” has a political “Cartoonion” section at the end of their show... The Washington Post has Tom Toles’ political cartoons... And MSN has a regular political cartoon feature as well, like this one: akamaized.net... DCRTV is already a pretty funny web site what with you & Mr. Crotchy (well, Mr. Crotchy is funny at least but it’s hard to tell you apart) but besides Gus in Gaithersburg’s stupid posts, which aren’t that funny, it could be funnier: just seeing a photo of you isn’t enough. (9/16/18)

Slight correction: 810 WYRE's license is *about to* expire, having ceased operations on September 20, 2017 - at least that's what they told the FCC. I'm sure WRNR-FM doesn't even know it's being relayed. As we saw with Birach's stations, they've got about 10 years before the FCC comes calling...The provision of automatic license deletion in the Telecommunications Act (it is the law, not an FCC rule) was supposed to address the issue of people from holding on to dormant licenses indefinitely like this, but clearly it does not work. (9/16/18)

Ron wrote, "...I was scanning the AM dial this morning and heard a signal on 810. It is from WRNR FM 103.1. The 810 signal has been dead for over year." According to the FCC's database, WYRE Annapolis is still operating on 810 kHz with 250 watts. If it was repeating the programming of WRNR-FM, that's a different matter. (9/16/18)

/\ September 16 Messages /\

\/ September 15 Messages \/

Well, this may finally speed up the sale of WFRE/WFMD and the rest of the Aloha Trust stations The Frederick properties have really failed the past couple of years, it's been at least that long since the ratings were above a 15 for WFRE...bigly sad! Perhaps health issues of the trustee were part of that. Sell, sell and then hired some quality managers and bring these stations back! radioink.com (9/15/18)

Dave I was scanning the AM dial this morning and heard a signal on 810. It is from WRNR FM 103.1. The 810 signal has been dead for over year. Have a nice weekend. Ron (9/15/18)

Good AM! Or is that FM! I grew up in Tidewater (Norfolk area) to the progressive sounds of WOWI-FM 103 and around 2010, went on the net to see what I could find about this impressive and influential station. It located at 913 Colonial Avenue in the Ghent section of the city. Studio was on the third floor, accessible after hours by the long straight fire escape stairs, leading to what the dis referred to as the ‘earth orbital escape hatch’. That initial search yielded only two sentences and I knew one of them was wrong…so I began what was a 3-5 year research project, locating tidbits here and there, piecing together the history in a rag tag style. Conducted interviews with some of the djs, found people who were hoarding old tapes, had them re-engineered…we have some 20 hours of original and reunion shows (from the early 80s). Began a book page, have a website and wiki.The station was owned by the late Stewart Brinsfield, Jr (a lawyer) and his father (a Reverend and I understand that is/was a common practice). Their relationship over what the station was playing was always contentious. In a landmark case, the FCC charged Stew Jr and the station with playing ‘obscene lyrics’ with the Country Joe and Fish’s ‘Fuck’ chant at Woodstock. This was the first time that the FCC had done so. This was the front page story in several issues of Billboard. The charges were later dropped by the DJ who played it, John Nesci, was fired. But then again, people were coming and going to/from the station all the time. The station’s last song was Hendrix’s All Along the Watchtower that Art Williamson played, leading to midnight on Jan 15, 1975…Bishop Willis, who bought the station, brought in armed ‘thugs’ to ensure a smooth ‘takeover from the hippies’… I, like many, were listening that night, knowing that the airwaves in Tidewater would never be the same. Many still hold on to the fact that radio there never recovered. Brinsfield Jr, when I interviewed him, said that ‘Selling the station was the biggest regret of my life!”; ‘I was driving around listening to the last show, crying like a school girl!’ I then asked him what he would have done had he kept the station: “would have made it bigger and better”. Seems like you cover mostly the DC area yet I see that you do have news going down to Norfolk. Progressive WOWI-FM 1970-75 links: Fbook: www.facebook.com... Website: www.progressivewowifm.com... wiki: wikipedia.org... Former WOWI-FM dj Larry Dinger thanked me for ‘resurrecting the station!” After WOWI was sold, he went on to Austin, TX to KOKE-FM who are regarded as being the source of what became known as the ‘Austin sound’. Not bad. davidjbrown winston salem , nc (9/15/18)

/\ September 15 Messages /\

\/ September 14 Messages \/

The Washington Post reports that WMAL talker Rush Limbaugh has repeatedly pushed a conspiracy theory that government exaggerates hurricane forecasts to prove climate change: wapo.st (9/14/18)

Imagine being the new baseball play-by-play guy for THIS team. You'd never get the name out without laughing: ballparkdigest.com (9/14/18)

WMAL talker Mark Levin abruptly departed before his show’s third hour Thursday night after sounding weak and coughing in the final moments of the second hour. Levin, who has a long history of heart ailments, was barely audible answering his final caller. Just after WMAL’s 8:00PM news ended and the third hour began frequent sub-host Don Bongino came on air to announce Mark rarely departs his show, but he had been called by the producer & asked to take over the show for the final hour. Besides Levin’s heart ailments, he has said both of his parents (in their 90’s) had been ill of late and he has taken off from his show several times in recent weeks to tend to them in Florida. Either way, prayers to Levin, the “Pit Bull” of conservative talk radio: twitter.com/marklevinshow (9/14/18)

/\ September 14 Messages /\

\/ September 13 Messages \/

Sorry to hear of the passing of Mike Pintek. I grew up listening to him as the News Director at WKBO in Harrisburg. He broke the Three Mile Island story. –Brian (9/13/18)

RE: the oldest person to have a hit song - 96 year old Fred Stobaugh penned the song "Oh Sweet Lorraine" which peaked at #42 on Billboard in 2013. That, according to them, made him the oldest living artist to appear on the Hot 100. His documentary is on YouTube. Tom in Frederick (9/13/18)

Yes, The Baltimore Sun took its Paywall down for just ONE AP story about the hurricane, not any of its own stories about the hurricane. Golly gee, that’s real nice of them. (9/13/18)

"Why don't radio stations see themselves as "internet-based audio content providers" instead of "Radio Stations"?" Because they have dozens of times more listeners over the air than they do on the internet, and there's no money in online. It's all about the money. (9/13/18)

DCRTV Dave in a rare moment of emotion should be congratulated for a passionate video recounting of his “Where were you on 9-11?” moment, especially since he was accompanying his now deceased mother to the doctor which must bring back other memories as well. Indeed, many of us were listening to the Howard Stern Show that morning (which is a little embarrassing to admit that is how we first learned of the attacks): I was on the second floor of the Hart Senate Office Building for a hearing on Bush’s newly designated “Drug Czar”, John Walters, wearing headphones & listening to Howard on my Sony Walkman, and looking out onto the huge foyer when I noticed that hundreds of people were running for the exits. Moments later the U.S. Capitol Police were evacuating people from the hearing room, ordering us out of the building. As we came outside and looked down the Mall towards the Washington Monument, we could see what looked like smoke rising in the background: it was moments after the plane had hit the Pentagon. We made it to the jammed Senate parking lot, got my Jeep and I turned Howard back on who by now was in full hysteria about what had happened: as we know today, had United 93 made it to its intended target, the U.S. Capitol, we could have all been toast that day as well (our thanks to those heroes on UA 93!). Here’s Howard’s first moments learning of the attacks: www.youtube.com (9/13/18)

/\ September 13 Messages /\

\/ September 12 Messages \/

I asked someone in management at 105.7 The Fan why it is not available on my Google Home. His response was "buy an Alexa" (is it really available on Alexa?) Why don't radio stations see themselves as "internet-based audio content providers" instead of "Radio Stations"? It seems to me they should be looking beyond the users listening OTA, and toward anywhere/anyhow audio content is provided. WBAL is always mentioning where, beyond OTA, they can be heard. Of course they are on the AM band, so I can understand. (9/12/18)

"The Washington Post in an act of public service has taken down their firewall for all Hurricane Florence related stories on their web site" And the Baltimore Sun still has unlimited access. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/12/18)

Don’t you worry your pretty little self about Bezos and The Post PAYWALL loss of money. He would just put more Amazon employees on Food Stamps and welfare to make up for it. And better yet, he’ll get back at Trump at the same time for his damn positive growth! :-) (9/12/18)

/\ September 12 Messages /\

\/ September 11 Messages \/

The Washington Post in an act of public service has taken down their firewall for all Hurricane Florence related stories on their web site: “Note to Readers: The Post has removed article limits on coverage of Hurricane Florence to make these stories available without a subscription.” No word on how much this will cost billionaire Jeff Bezos but rumor has it he will take it out of the pay of Post staffers: DCRTVDJDAVE refuses to take down his firewall. (9/11/18)

Dave's response: I've also noticed that live feeds of The Weather Channel proliferate all over YouTube. You don't need no stinkin' cable subscription to get it during the hurricane emergency.....

BIRACH LOSES TWO STATIONS! RIP WVAB AM 1550 and WVBA AM 1450, now DWVAB & DWBVA. Either the FCC wasn’t buying the charitable donation thing or the charities themselves said no f’n way. Here’s wishing the same fate for WDMV 700 and WGOP 540. I know Mangione’s WCBM 680 would love Detroit’s WNZK to go off the air and take away one of their nighttime western nulls. (9/11/18)

Kevin Sheehan, formerly of wtem AM 980, started a podcast this past Thursday called The Kevin Sheehan Show. It will be a daily show that will last an hour. Tom Loverro will be with him each Tuesday and Thursday. In the first full episode, he talks about the reason he is no longer with 980 is because the new owners wanted to cut costs. TheKevinSheehanShow.com (9/11/18)

Re the Bolly station -- there is a considerable difference between OWNING a signal and LEASING one. (9/11/18)

I've noticed from FCC filings that you can now add WMAR ABC 2 to the list of Baltimore TV stations operating at lower power due to transmitter issues which will affect your reception via antenna. Failure of certain modules have limited WMAR to 660 kw instead of 1000 kw. Repairs are underway. They are switching to a new transmitter when they move to channel 27 at 830 kw. Recently, WNUV CW 54 had some problems with its move to channel 25 and is stuck at 750 kw, and might be staying there at that power from another FCC filing for a bit or longer? -- BaltoMedia.net (9/11/18)

/\ September 11 Messages /\

\/ September 10 Messages \/

"Radio-locator.net shows Bolly 102.9 to be a translator/repeater for WWWT Manassas, licensed to Hubbard (WTOP). This is getting deep." What's that supposed to mean? Metro Radio leases WWWT-HD2 to feed the translator, so yes, it is licensed as a translator for WWWT. Everything is above board... (9/10/18)

(regarding a previous post) If WRC weather anchor Sheena Parveen is headed for NBC7 San Diego, she'll be welcomed warmly. KNSD is an NBC O&O and she'll be joining a first rate news operation. And this kind of move won't be without precedent. Back in the early 80s, former WRC news anchor Marty Levin joined NBC7 San Diego and enjoyed a long, successful run here. I'm sure there'll be a culture shift for Parveen, in terms of weather forecasting. There's not a market that's more different than DC, weather-wise, but at KNSD and at other stations in town, the weather departments are fully staffed and are key members of each station's news team. She'll do fine and I doubt she'll miss the frantic nature of DC itself, not to mention those seasonal "Bread, milk, toilet paper" stock-up rants that are required during DC's blizzard months each winter. (9/10/18)

/\ September 10 Messages /\

\/ September 9 Messages \/

Kevin Sheehan started a new podcast on Friday, in case anyone is interested in listening to him. According to the first show, he plans to be on 5 days a week and drop a 60+ minute podcast sometime in the morning. He’ll have Thom Lavero on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and is discussing plans to have Cooley be involved too. Recorded at Mr. Tony’s Chatter studio with Mark Sterne as producer, at least for now. The initial show was a bit of a mish-mash as he crammed 4 hours of content into 60 minutes but if you enjoyed Kevin, you should check it out. Available at iTunes, Tune-in, and all the usual podcast sources. According to Kevin, the departure from 980 was because management of Urban One Radio was cheap. (9/9/18)

"Wpfw could help itself with something like a prog rock show Would draw lots of well heeled folks who would support a neglected art form Agree?" They'd be well-positioned to compete with WMAL's rumoured Go-Go show. Throwing money down a rathole is no way to deal with the elephant in the room. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/9/18)

"WPFW ... prog rock show Would draw lots of well heeled folks who would support a neglected art form Agree?" Sorry, no I dont. Fairfax Public Access TV/Radio has aired and streamed Prog-Rock shows for ages on its "Radio Fairfax" channel which can be heard by anyone with a computer. While entertaining, its certainly not knocking the moon out of the sky. Unfortunate too, as the hosts do a very capable job. (9/9/18)

The Washington Post tv & radio sports listings for Sunday, September 9th does not include The Sports Junkies “Unofficial Pre-Game Show” from 11:00AM to 1:00PM on WJFK 106.7 FM nor WMAL 105.9 FM pre-game and live coverage of the Skins vs. Cardinals game starting at 3:00PM and only lists WTEM 980 AM. WMAL & WJFK publicists: call your office. What gives, Dave? The listings: www.washingtonpost.com (9/9/18)

Wpfw could help itself with something like a prog rock show Would draw lots of well heeled folks who would support a neglected art form Agree? (9/9/18)

Radio-locator.net shows Bolly 102.9 to be a translator/repeater for WWWT Manassas, licensed to Hubbard (WTOP). This is getting deep. (9/9/18)

Is there any scuttlebutt that the TV news departures are related to pressures to be ridiculously thin? Some of the local anchors, reporters and weather staff look like they were just released from a North Korean prison they’re so gaunt. I gravitated to WJLA because their on-air staff looks relatively healthy in comparison to WRC and WUSA, where half the on-air staff look like they have eating disorders. (9/9/18)

Hmmmm why would a young, pretty, tv weathergal leave Washington DC for sunny San Diego? Maybe she got tired of being hit on by douche bag married lawyers everytime she turned around. Run Sheena Run! As far as Andrea McCarren is concerned, maybe she is tired of being surrounded by liberal pussy boy "journalists" who worship at the alter of Never Trump. For anyone with even a slight conservative bias, working in DC media has become a loathsome task. The most laughable aspect of the newsrooms in DC s the ever vigilant hope that Trump will be impeached and Hillary "reinstated". It's that bad. I can't imagine being a woman in DC looking for a man who has any ambition to actually be something other than a toad. (9/9/18)

/\ September 9 Messages /\

\/ September 8 Messages \/

Have you listened to the new station Bolly 102.9 FM? The station is owned by Metro Radio. It is unique in the DC Market. They have a great signal in Northern Virginia. Try it! (9/8/18)

Longtime local sports talk radio listener here. Can some of you radio experts out there answer two questions for me. 1. Seeing all the immediate changes with the new ownership at Team980 raises the questions in my mind "don't these air staff people have contracts with the station?" How can a new owner just come in an get rid of so many people right away? Or is all the air talent just at will employees? 2. All these local local sports talk shows live by having local and national print and electronic media guests that they interview. I'm assuming that these are paid interviews correct? So the people that get interviewed alot need to keep on the good side of the station personalities so that the interviews continue? Just wondering how it works. Thanks. (9/8/18)

Its worth noting that WPFW-FM is on the lookout for a new Program Director, and has been since late July. If you think you can show them the way, send 'em your shit. (9/8/18)

Thanks for the poster reminding me of Walter Brennan having Old Rivers as a hit song late in life I remember him From the Real McCoys TV series .I thought he was maybe 69 or 70 at the time not that old people looked older than thier age alot back then.Louis Armstrong was up there also when Hello Dolly was a number 1 song I believe he was 65 an accomplishment because the Beatles were dominating the charts then. (9/8/18)

Catching up on the Mailbag, and came across this from a WBAL apologist from 08/29: "You obviously have no clue how a modern newsroom works, assignments are made..." assignments ?? There are no assignments at 1090. It's more like index cards with JP or AK in the upper right had corner to signify who reads what. Couple of recent stories. 1. Students at UMD College Park are sleeping in lobbies as there is no dorm space. This isn't "news". This has been going on since the '70s when I was there. An "assignment" is to send someone there and find our why this is still happening 40+ years later, who is accountable, and how will it get rectified in the future. 2. The recent opening of the flood gates at the Conowingo Dam. Not news. It too has been going on for decades. An "Assignment" would be to find out why they get to the point that it's open all the gates as opposed to opening a few gates earlier in the week. 3. No AC in Baltimore City and County Schools. No kidding. Not news. Why, who is responsible, why are they still in their current positions?. That's an "Assignment. I asked Jim Russ if he or someone could do a report on the Ft. McHenry Tunnel. It's been at least since May that there are long sections where the light banks are completely out. He said it was a "lighting replacement project" No s$%t. Why is it taking over 3 months? If you don't have the replacement lights available, why are they shutting down the existing lights? Anyone care to take this on as an "assignment". Sadly, there is no real competition for 1090. Back in the day, WFBR had an outstanding news team. Same for WCBM. Even WCAO had a few reporters, not newsreaders. SIGH. At least 'scremin' Scottie" had an active fire yesterday to do his live report, as opposed to standing in front of not yet opened for business buildings at 5am. (9/8/18)

Besides WDCW 50 dumping the nightly 10PM newscast produced by Richmond's WTVR 6. Tribune has decided to cancel the Morning Dose program (formerly Eye Opener) from its stations. WPHL 17 in Philly is reportedly looking to expand its in-house morning newscast, but no word on the future of WPVI 6 produced 10PM newscast. KIAH 39 in Houston and KDAF 33 in Dallas is also reportedly axing non-traditional nightly News Fix newscast, in favor of relaunching more traditional newscast. This comes on the heels of Sinclair-Tribune merger going nowhere, and both parties suing one another. It still remains to be seen whether Tribune could be exploring selling its TV portfolio to a completely different company in the near future. (9/8/18)

Dave, Is it m imagination, or has there been an uptick in local TV reporters ditching their jobs for some other line of work? Andrea McCarren just left WUSA, Suzanne Kennedy said goodbye to ABC7, Matt Ackland is gone from Fox5, Mike Carter-Conneen left News8, and now the departures from WRC. Is this the usual coming and going, or something else? (9/8/18)

/\ September 8 Messages /\

\/ September 7 Messages \/

I am hearing rumors that Cox Broadcasting has closed or is closing its DC bureau? I hope that doesn't include its Capitol Hill unit. Jamie Dupree is a real pro, has overcome adversity, and deserves recognition for years of congressional coverage. Haven't found news to confirm or dispute the fate, but did find this YouTube from a few years ago produced by the Cox DC Bureau. Jamie's in there. Hoping the best.. (9/7/18)

WPFW tries to be everything for everybody. I love the jazz music on there but they are don't have much of that anymore. Are ratings a priority for Pacifica stations or are the donations? (9/7/18)

[RE: probably the oldest person 76 to have a hit song played on radio.] Walter Brennan had several hits in the early 60s at ages 76-78, most notably Old Rivers at age 77 in 1962. Ah 1962. Back when radio listeners were complaining, "Why won't Carroll James at WWDC play anything by the Beatles?" (9/7/18)

According to All Access, WZBB-FM was sold. (In other filings with the FCC, WNLB RADIO, INC. is selling Country WZBB (SUPER COUNTRY 99.9)/STANLEYTOWN, VA to TURNER MEDIA GROUP, INC. for $325,000.) They were actually put on the air as a new station. From their site: Super Country B99.9 is officially WZBB-FM, which is locally owned and operated by WNLB Radio Inc. Donny Brook and Glenn Lynch are principal owners of Super Country B99.9, which began operating as B-99.9 in March 1989. Studios are at Oak Level Va. and transmitter near Ferrum Va. on Thornton Mountain. WZBB serves portions of seven South-central Virginia counties and Rockingham County NC. Initially B-99.9 played Adult Contemporary music while sister station WNLB-AM was our country outlet. At midnight December 31st 1991 the switch was made to "Today"s Hot Country" and for the next 15 years B-99.9 reigned as the ratings champion in this area. In October of 2006 the switch to Super Country B99.9, "The Greatest Hits of All Time", became official, and the Arbitron ratings continued to increase. We're proud to serve our listeners with the largest variety of country covering four decades. I was honored to have done afternoons for them for nine years after retirement from my "real" job as a survey vessel captain. Glen Lynch and Donnie Brook were the primary owners, all are retired. There was a time while there that we were all given a 25 cent an hour raise after a big hike in gas prices. It was not much but how many station owners would have even done that. I wish them all the best in their retirement! That was a cool station to be part of, well run for a market so small. Tom Conroy WXCY-FM (9/7/18)

Anybody know what radio station airs Thursday night NFL in DC area tried to find Eagles Falcons game last night or will they only air game if Redskins or Ravens are playing? Speaking of Wash Fm glad to hear them playing Paul McArtneys latest release not a bad song but of course nothing like the old stuff from the 70s but probably the oldest person 76 to have a hit song played on radio. (9/7/18)

Re: WPFW; Pacifica's flagship, WBAI New York, resubscribed to Nielsen and drew 0.1 in August. Zero point one! In New York! Absolutely embarrassing. Pacifica has had well-publicized financial issues for years and years, and clearly there is no appetite for their programming either. American Public Media almost bought WGTS a few years ago (I imagine they would have turned it into a local AAA station similar to Minneapolis' 89.3 The Current) - it would be great if they or anyone else came in and grabbed WPFW. Really, if you're a full-power FM getting lower ratings than WYCB, The Gamut, Bolly 102.9 and Bluegrass Country, give up. Right now WPFW is just wasting power. (9/7/18)

"DCRTV hears that Tribune is yanking the 10 PM half-hour newscast on Channel 50/WDCW" How did they expect that it would ever be successful? There are too many things going against them: a decades-long reputation of being a channel filled with second-tier shows, no visible local talent, no track of being DC-centric at all, flat production values and an emotionless plain vanilla delivery. It looked exactly like what is was: an out-of-market production trying a half-assed attempt at being part of the DC tapestry. It didn't help that they were up against the sensationalist stop-the-presses breathless delivery of Fox 5. I applaud Tribune for the attempt, but they entered into it without doing all the research they should have. (9/7/18)

Re: Entercom's "I'm Listening" broadcast hosted by Seattle radio personality BJ Shea: I guess Dr. Frasier Crane was unavailable? (9/7/18)

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Did WPFW even register in the latest monthly ratings? I know it's usually low down the list, but I didn't see it on the home-page rankings. Is it really less listened to than those secondary stream-only channels? Wow. (9/6/18)

Dave's response: WPFW was nowhere in the ratings listing I saw.....

Passing along some thoughts: 1) Congrats to Steve Watters and Jessica Cash from Fredericksburg's WFLS on a CMA Broadcaster of the Year nomination in the small market category. Nice to see them getting some national attention. 2) Not surprised that IHeart is trying a news format on 104.7. But I think they will try not to upend WTOP but take aim at WFED instead (hence the "Capitol News" name that has been bandied about). IHeart doesn't have a big news presence on it's DC FM stations. Surprising since they have Total Traffic (ex-Metro Traffic) and it supposedly is called TTWN to indicate also a weather component. They have tried to launch some sort of national all-news programming as well. Just be curious as to what shows up on 104.7, but I doubt WTOP has any worries. (9/6/18)

Is the lineup WTEM’s been going with recently (Galdi 6-10 AM, Walker 10AM – 1 PM, Mitchell 1-4 PM, Czaban 4-7 PM) the permanent one? If so, why hasn’t there been any formal announcement yet? Will Scott Linn be working two different afternoon shows for the long haul? The other day Mitchell and Czaban had widely divergent takes on the Kaepernick-Nike deal and Linn appeared to agree (or at least go along) with both of them – is there some unwritten rule in talk radio that the second banana’s not allowed to spar with the main host or challenge him/her on any issue of significance? Speaking of Czaban, perhaps the station’s new owners need to have a frank discussion with him regarding sensitivity on the air – in view of the recent cancer-related deaths of Aretha Franklin and Senator McCain and the ongoing battle being waged by football legend Jim Kelly, wishing ‘the most painful form of cancer imaginable’ on anyone (even the worst scumbags) really comes across as tasteless and inappropriate and I don’t care if it was tongue-in-cheek or intended to be serious. (9/5/18)

I wonder what the suits at alleged, wanna-be news radio 1090 are saying about the Baltimore market radio ratings for August, showing a continuation of the downward spiral of this station to #14, three more notches below rival WCBM. How much longer will they allow the circus clowns to perform? (9/5/18)

OK, Labor Day has come and gone, Summer is unofficially over, and stores already have their Hallowe'en crap out. So why hasn't WASH FM started playing Christmas music yet? (9/6/18)

I remember listening to Jerry Klein when he was WMAL's "pet liberal". That different point of view made the station better in my view as a listener. It's currently an echo chamber; Dave has talked about this over the last few years. It's a far cry from the WRC AM 980 of the '80s with Joel Spivak, Bev Whatshername, and Joe Madison. More live, more local, and more varied. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/6/18)

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So yet another weather person is leaving NBC4.Somara Theodore left a few weeks ago and now Sheena Parveen..I never felt that Somara Theodore felt at home there anyway. To me, she just seemed like she was going through the motions..And now Sheena Parveen is leaving. What's going on in the weather department?? (9/5/18)

ENTERCOM has announced a two-hour live commercial-free broadcast special to raise awareness around mental health and suicide prevention as part of its multi-platform “I’m Listening” campaign. The “I’m Listening” broadcast marks the start of National Suicide Prevention Week and will be hosted by Active Rock KISW/SEATTLE morning host BJ SHEA, airing across all of the company’s stations nationwide on SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 9th at 7a in their respective time zones. Guests will include medical experts, and musicians and celebrities including PEARL JAM's MIKE MCCREADY and STONE GOSSARD, Olympic swimming champion MICHAEL PHELPS, LINKIN PARK's MIKE SHINODA, Actor and THIRTY SECONDS TO MARS singer JARED LETO, among others. Listeners will have the opportunity to participate via a live call-in option and interactive website. (9/5/18)

Hi Dave, Just saw this video on the Facebook page for willthomastv. Will Thomas goes to Sotheby’s with a digital media presence. He is very missed on Fox 5 in my opinion. I thought this might be a good news item for you because I’ve wondered if he was going to pop up on another channel or network. Keep up the good work Dave. If you don’t need to use my message that’s fine by me. Adrienne www.youtube.com (9/5/18)

Award-Winning Journalist Andrea McCarren to Join PenFed Team www.prnewswire.com (9/5/18)

Speaking of "freak stories of unusual radio reception" have you ever received something when a local station is off the air ?? Back in the summer of 1988 I was in Pittsburgh, The day I was there 102.5 WDVE was off the air so what came in at 102.5 ?? Winchester's Q102 !! Some shops actually had on Q102 !! It was odd hearing Winchester content in downtown Pittsburgh !! WDVE was off the air a good part that day and Q102 was almost like a local some felt THAT was WDVE sporting a format change. It made we wondering that if Q102 was off the air can one get WDVE in Winchester or Martinsburg ?? I know that 97.5 WKMZ can make all the way to Lynchburg if Charlottesvlle's 97.5 3WV-FM is off the air. (9/5/18)

"WDMV AM 700 still has a construction permit for 50 kw expiring in 2020. But will they build it? Probably not." Oh-h-h, I hope they do. I will laugh my ass off if they go into debt sinking several hundred $K into building a 50 kW lawn dart. (9/5/18)

In the summers of 2012 and 2013 I repeatedly received fm signals from parts of Texas on two car radios just outside Gettysburg along Biglerville road. The location was a parking lot of a nursing home and the signals were heard in the late afternoon of hot humid days in Gettysburg for about a half hour each time. The specific stations have left my memory except for The Wolf 99.5 KPLX in Fort Worth. It is a former Susquehanna station that I heard twice in the 1980s while crossing over the river between Lancaster and York counties on the road to work... at the original Susquehanna station....WSBA 910. (9/5/18)

Dave, On Monday afternoon bluegrasscvountry.org, WAMU 88.5 HD-2, long-time host Lee Michael Dempsey announced that after 30-plus years he would be going off the weekday 3- 6 pm shift, and that he will moving to the weekend shift; days and times to be determined. Not know at this point who will fill the weekday afternoon drive time; supposed to happen in the next few weeks or so. (9/5/18)

WDMV AM 700 still has a construction permit for 50 kw expiring in 2020. But will they build it? Probably not. I don’t think any night time signal will ever be possible with the WLW AM 700 blowtorch in Cincy. (9/5/18)

Just read the recent posts about trope and freak stories of unusual radio reception and wanted to add that Chincoteague seems to be a really good place to experience this phenomenon, especially early in the morning. It's right on the water and there aren't any extremely tall buildings blocking the signal. It's been awhile since I've been down there, but I remember receiving stations from as far North as Atlantic City, NJ to as far South as the Outer Banks, as well as some D.C., Baltimore, and Philly stations. An example that I remember is 95.3. During the mid-day and afternoon, I would hear WKDB Laurel, DE, which is now Spanish but was Hot AC "B 101.7/95.3" at the time. Later at night and early morning, I will hear The Outer Banks classic rock station which I think was called "The Rock" and is now "Pirate Radio." I also remember hearing 94.5 WCMS, the country channel from Outer Banks, as well as 93.1 WPOC, WGTS 91.9, and 101.9 WLIF, all quite clearly. Listening to 97.1 was also interesting as WABD Ocean City which was smooth jazz at the time got quite an interference from WASH. While vacationing in Seabrooke Island, SC, just outside of Charleston, I remember hearing X 102.9, an alternative station from Jacksonville, FL during one afternoon, as well as hearing some Charlotte and Greensboro, NC stations one morning. From my home in Frederick County, MD, it's not uncommon for me to receive Fredericksburg and Richmond stations as well as Virginia Beach once in a while, mainly in the morning during the summer. The only experience that I remember of receiving FM stations from over a thousand miles away was back in 2005, not long after Hurricane Katrina, I received News Radio 104.9 out of Southern Mississippi. I would assume that the recent weather conditions in that area most likely caused the signal to bounce. I heard it for about five minutes before it completely went away. They were obviously talking about the aftermath of the hurricane and giving advice and providing support for those who were affected.- Jason from Frederick County (9/5/18)

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I am truly saddened to read about the death of Jerry Klein. He was not only my producer at WMAL, Channel 50 TV, and Sirius XM, he was a dear friend whom I loved. I think about him nearly every day. I had not heard from him for a while and did not know why. Now I do. God give you peace, Jerry. (9/4/18)

Saw post from phil wood when u comin back to radio postgame ? (9/4/18)

The two local Birach stations of note -- WDMV and WGOP -- are both up for license renewal a year from now, in October 2019. The AM dial would be a much better place if the family just turned in the licenses and slunk out of town under the cover of darkness. (9/4/18)

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Andy Parrish (Andrew Gasparich) passed away August 30. He was 86. Andy was news director at WTOP in the early 1970's and gave many of our first jobs. His obituary is in Sunday's Post. Andy was a good guy, a fine boss, and an extremely patient mentor. Phil Wood (9/3/18)

WRZB-LD definitely exists and I receive it in Alexandria, albeit poorly at times. Data collected from it: www.rabbitears.info... Live reception data (older tuner): www.rabbitears.info... Live reception data (newer tuner): www.rabbitears.info... The listing on RabbitEars is based on my first-hand reception. - Trip www.rabbitears.info (9/3/18)

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Administration may shut down time-synchronizing radio stations www.voanews.com (9/2/18)

When President Trump ran for office, he promised to "Drain the swamp at the FCC". So far, this has not been done. There are still many Rules and Regulations that should be changed or dropped! Many of these Rules and Regulations date back to 1934. They are out of date and cause a hardship on small AM Stations. (9/2/18)

Channel 6 LPTV......These Low Power TV Licenses were granted so that Minorities could get into Television Ownership. The FCC said they would grant Minorities first opportunity to obtain these licenses. Today, none of these licenses are owned by Minorities. It was a Sham! The licenses were sold off to Buyers who operated them as FM Radio Stations, using their audio channel 87.7 FM. None of these stations operate as TV Stations as was intended. Should the FCC do anything about it? (9/2/18)

Hello Dave My name is Donnie Dotson I grew up in Northern Va.in the 60'and 70's.I have been watching your videos in the Northern Va area at the different restaurants.I have enjoyed them pretty well.I spent some time in Springfield over the years.I also enjoyed your band scan on AM and FM.An answer to your question yes I listen to the radio.I am also a Ham Radio Operator.I also found you years ago looking for info on Northern Va tv stations and programs.Captain 20 and all the stuff on channel 20.Keep up the good work.Thanks Donnie. (9/2/18)

A question for you, Dave, in relation to WRZB-LD and Decades. You've never listed WRZB-LD on the station list. Is this because no one has ever been able to receive this station? For all, is anyone currently able to receive WRZB-LD? Very frustrating to see a promo on Decades telling viewers to look on the Decades website for a new station September 3 and to find nothing more than a listing for Baltimore reading "coming soon" and the old seemingly non existent WRZB-LD. Bad move, CBS. (9/2/18)

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Low power WRZB 31 (RF 32) won’t be a good option for DECADES long term as channel 32 is going to be used by 2 area full power TV stations, WBOC CBS 16 TV Salisbury and WHP CBS 21 in Harrisburg. Both of them overlap in some way with "Lower power 31’s" current signal and it will be either forced off the air or forced to move somewhere. (9/1/18)

"HOWEVER.......if I'm in the accounting department, I might be moved to ask why, if he's healthy enough to be out riding a bike, he's not healthy enough to be back at work." If you're in the accounting department you're the worst employee in the accounting department because such considerations are not part of the purview of the accounting department. But good citizens sleep better knowing you're out there POLICING CANCER VICTIMS trying to game the system with their minor facial injuries. Gus in the Gaithersburg (9/1/18)

Worth noting as well that StartTV will be added to currently nonexistent subchannel 49.2 on WWTD-LD. Decades remains on WRZB-LD 31.5 but its website lists only "Coming Soon" in Baltimore. (9/1/18)

Since It's been a slow news week, I did some digging into Sinclair's plans for Next Generation TV, aka ATSC 3.0. As SBG owns Dielectric, one of the largest TV transmitter companies in the world, that website has a sample plan for WNUV CW 54 in Baltimore, which Sinclair might intend on using as its first station to use the Next Gen system in Baltimore or possibly nationwide. If you look at the signal contour pic, 4 repeater transmitters are used in weaker directional signal locations and also strategic locations for rural access. ATSC 3.0 has the ability to pick the best signal and buffer when switching so you won't notice which tower you're getting it from. This is another way that indoor reception distant from the main tower will be easier. And notice that they are mostly away from the DC market, but interestingly Sinclair has also tested a system for one signal for DC/Baltimore that covers both although that is currently verboten with the FCC. It's like Nuvision, Inc. all over again. ?? More at Sinclair's Dielectric website. Warning. Most of it is very technical. -- BaltoMedia.net www.dialectric.com (9/1/18)

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