Friday, December 31, 2010

Eight Days a Week!

We do work a lot in this business, and this week's radio lecturer on Business Sales, Pat Matthews, has put in a few hard day's night in his career!

Pat has been involved in radio, TV and voiceovers for most of his adult life... having worked at stations in New Orleans as well as Los Angeles. News anchor, air joc for everything from Christian to Country, play-by-play sports announcer, and host for late-night infomercials... you've seen or heard Pat's work before!

A love for the music of The Beatles has now turned into a business venture, as the founder of the internet radio station "Beatles-A-Rama!!!"  Check it out, and support this great station.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Stranded in Breaking News!

So you're a TV station with only one fill-time reporter and that reporter gets stuck in the great blizzard of 2010. What do you dow now?  As excerpted from the New York Times:

KRTV News in Great Falls, Mont., has exactly one full-time reporter, Kay Rossi, on the Monday-to-Friday local news beat. So when Ms. Rossi called in stranded — snowbound with family in Connecticut, uncertain when she would be able to get back West — the tiny station’s managers were thrown into a staffing crisis. Then they improvised: They made her plight a news story.

A telephone interview from the newsroom direct to Ms. Rossi’s aunt’s house in East Lyme was featured on Monday’s 5:30 p.m. broadcast. Breathless updates were posted on the station’s Web site — “Kay Rossi still trying to return to Great Falls” was the headline posted Tuesday afternoon.

Meanwhile, Ms. Rossi, 25, was put to work posting messages on Twitter and her Facebook page about the storm, the travails of dealing with Delta Air Lines, and her aunt’s car, which was stuck in the snow.
Ms. Rossi’s boss, Heath Heggem, KRTV’s content manager, said in a telephone interview that a missing staff member in a news department of 10 people, including weather and sports, left a big hole. Ms. Rossi, who is originally from upstate New York, typically files up to four stories a day on the doings of Great Falls, from crime to education to economics.
She is hoping to be back in Montana by Friday afternoon.
“It puts a little bit of a strain on things,” Mr. Heggem said, “but it’s what you have to do in small markets sometimes.”

Friday, December 24, 2010

And Now, With the News!

Our recent Southern California storms gave this week's radio lecturer Michelle Merker something current to discuss with students on the topic of News Development. 

You've seen her around the school as a PI and Vocal Coach, but did you know that this four-time Emmy nominee  has spent 20-plus years working in the Los Angeles market in both television and radio as a News Director, Director of Public Affairs, Writer, Producer and Talent?  She has also worked on both network and syndicated TV programs, and has acted as freelance talent on national TV, radio and corporate projects. A member of ClearChannel/Airwatch/Total Traffic Network team, she can currently be heard doing the news and traffic on a number of radio stations in Southern California, including KOST and KRLA. And the TV show she currently produces, "Discover Orange County," can be seen on KOCE-TV (PBS SoCal,) and The OC Channel. As producer, Michelle is also busy promoting her first feature film, “Shellter.” 

In her free time she... oh wait, she has no free time.

Here she is in a "vintage" picture with next week's guest lecturer.  Stay tuned...

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

And Sometimes Reporters Break the News...

... to newsmakers!

Excerpted from "TV Newser":

ABC’s Diane Sawyer sat down with three of the President’s top national security officials Monday afternoon, the same day 12 people in three British cities were arrested in a bomb plot.

One problem, the Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper,  who briefs the president everyday on the nation’s security, didn’t know about the arrests, which had been reported 8 hours earlier on the network morning shows. In her interview, which aired last on “World News”, Sawyer asks:
“First of all, London. How serious is it? Any implication that it was coming here?”
Clapper hesitated, before his colleague, White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan said, “You meant the arrests of the 12 individuals by the British early this morning. This is something that the British told us about early this morning when it was taking place.”
Later in the interview, Sawyer said to Clapper, “I was a little surprised you didn’t know about London.”
“Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t,” he said.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The "Buzz" on Kevin Fleming

Thanks to this week's ARB radio lecturer Kevin Fleming, who spoke to the students on Broadcast Syndication. Kevin has both hosted a nationally syndicated show, and developed affiliate marketing for another.  He's worked as VP and GM for a record label.  He's been Program Director at Los Angeles radio stations KACE and KRBV.  Most recently, he's the Owner/Publisher/Editor of The Urban Buzz, an online weekly entertainment publication which has become a trade industry standard.

With his vast understanding of the industry, it's no wonder Kevin is a student favorite!


Friday, December 17, 2010

Lights, Camera, Radio!

Congratulations ARB PI and lecturer Manny Pacheco!  He's going to start the year off right with a new weekly radio program on KSPA.  "Forgotten Hollywood" is a companion to his best selling book, Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History, and will focus on music from Hollywood's golden age.

"Forgotten Hollywood" will debut Sunday, January 9 at 3pm.  KSPA or The Spa can be heard throughout the Inland Empire and Orange County on 1510am and 1450am, or you can enjoy the hour-long show on its companion podcast.

In addition, current ARB student Remzi Gokmen was tapped to produce a commercial for the book, which will air during the program.

Tune in and support Manny's new show!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Talk About Downsizing!

The days of big news crews following reporters through news-making parts of the world appears to be over.

Although she has the power to insist on more, here's a photo of the entire crew Fox News' Greta Van Susteren took with her to Haiti this week.

Here is her explanation:
…when you turn in tonight to watch ON THE RECORD at 10pm, note that the video you see was shot by two people (Justin and me) and neither of us is a professional but we wanted to take YOU to Haiti with us. We both did the audio and the shooting (that will be evident.) We really wanted you to see what is going on there and we figured you would understand since this was a labor of love.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

What's News, Danny Frias?

Also known as Daniel Edward Stark, Danny was a very motivated student. He graduated in October 2009 and was employed by February 2010 as News Production Coordinator for KNX 1070am. 
Here are some examples of his daily responsibilities: 
Takes live feeds from reporters and edits them and make sure they are ready for air.
Sets up the live hits from TV about 5 or 6 times a day.

Takes soundbytes from CBS network feed and edits those for editor/producers.
Records weather reports from Jackie Johnson to run from 7pm to 5am.
Sets up live shots via ISDN for the "Business Hour" and for reporters.   

As a Web editor, he edits the "Business Hour" and posts it to the website 
He's also in charge of posting things on twitter and facebook, and sending out text alerts.  He also posts stories from reporters to the website. 

Danny is also now an Associate member of the Writer's Guild of America West!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Congratulations Jay Olin!

At the AirWatch/Total Traffic Network Holiday party this year, 2005 ARB graduate Jay Olin was honored with the 7th Ed Berger Award, as voted on by his peers.

Here's a bit about the award, and why it's so special:

"Ed was an AirWatch employee for eight years, usually handling the Saturday morning KFI News Shift, while also acting as the lead radio instructor at Fullerton College, and, of course, filling-in at AirWatch whenever he could for vacations, sick days, etc.  Ed passed away eight years ago of pancreatic cancer. 

The criteria for The Ed Berger Award are as follows: 

The Ed Berger Award will go to the Total Traffic employee who displays Professionalism, which includes being reliable, prepared, focused and thorough in his/her work.  In addition, this person goes beyond this to exhibit a positive and pleasant disposition at all times with a helpful attitude.  To further honor the memory of Ed, this employee also has a good sense of humor and exhibits grace under fire."

Jay keeps busy reporting traffic on stations Star 98.7, KTLK, KSBR, and a few Santa Barbara and high desert stations.

Standing behind Jay is last year's winner, ARB graduate Brian Otto. In fact, ARB graduates Rebecca (Knowles) Campbell, Claire Sigman and ARB lecturer Alan Ross are all past winners.

Nice job Jay!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Marshall Thomas, Man of Many (Ten Gallon) Hats!

Marshall gave a great talk to radio students on Production, and he has the experience to back it up! Currently heard as an on-air personality weekends on "Hot Country" KFRG 95.1, Marshall also spent time gaining a following on other stations throughout Southern California including KTDD, KOLA and KOSS.

Besides leading Vocal Coaching classes at the Academy on Saturdays, Marshall also can be seen in various movies, TV shows and on stage as an actor.

And never one to slow down, he's currently writing a children's book!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

"Survivor" Suspect's Dad Engineers Payola Challenge

From Media Bistro:

Just when you thought the media circus surrounding Hollywood criminal trial proceedings couldn’t get any more tasteless, along comes David Beresford-Redman (pictured). Moments after the denial yesterday of producer-son Bruce’s motion for the dismissal of a Mexican murder warrant for the April Cancun death of daughter-in-law Monica, there was dear old dad, hawking the couple’s three used cars on the steps of a U.S. District Court building.
Pops proudly explained that the first media outlet to come up with an aggregate buyer for a 1998 Mercedes-Benz SL Roadster, 2003 Porsche Targa and 2004 Chevy Suburban will enjoy the privilege of an exclusive interview with the vehicle owner that is still alive. Per a report by CNN’s Alan Duke, he then added this egregious kicker:
The $56,000 raised from the sale would go to the [couple's] young children, he said.
It’s bad enough that the ratio of embattled interview subjects demanding compensation for media sitdowns continues to creep upwards. But when that compensation, unbelievably, involves the murder victim’s personal possessions, it’s beyond offensive. Shame on you, Grandpa.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

NPR and PBS Under Fire

Excerpted from "The Wrap"

Massive budget shortfalls, vicious in-fighting and a power shift in Washington. Make no mistake, public media is facing the biggest ever threat to its existence. 
This time, the haters are deadly serious. And they have timing on their side.
At stake are hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding and the future of such popular programs as "Nova," "This American Life" and "Sesame Street."
And while public media has long been a favorite target for Republican lawmakers, the mounting federal deficit -- coupled with a series of PR blunders -- mean that threats to slash government aid to non-profit stations are no longer just idle boasting.
Should the government turn off the spigot, National Public Radio and Public Broadcasting Service will likely have enough corporate and donor support to limp along, but jobs will be lost and popular shows will have to be canceled. On a local level, some of the thousands of public television and radio stations will almost certainly have to close up shop.
Broadcast veterans and analysts say that the Republican party’s newfound control of congress may spell the end of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting -- the organization that distributes parts of the federal largesse to non-profit media.
CPB has requested $608 million for its next funding cycle, which begins in 2013. So far, the current constellation of Republicans in the House and Senate do not seem inclined to grant that request. Armed with the backing of President Obama’s deficit reduction committee, congressional leaders are gunning for the CPB and its $420 million budget. Funding from the CPB accounts on average for 15 percent of funding for the more than 1,100 public radio and television stations around the country

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Claire Sigman, TV Star!

I always focused on News at The Academy, and it has really paid off for me. (I graduated from the Academy in 2000.) While my first actual job out of ARB was as a weekend jock for KOSS and KTPI, I consider Airwatch/Clear Channel Traffic Los Angeles to be the first step in my career. I was hired in 2001 as a fill-in only Traffic Producer, then as full-time Producer and part-time Reporter, and then as Programming Supervisor and full-time Traffic Reporter and by 2004 I was the Operations Manager, Traffic Reporter and News Anchor. Moral of the story: Patience pays and learn everything you can every step of the way. 

But, I had lived on the West Coast for nearly 20 years and missed my family. So in August 2007 I left Clear Channel (yes, I left voluntary!) to move to Savannah Georgia. I downsized my career, but I spent the last year of my mother's life with her - having fun, hanging out, and just being there. 

Job wise, I was hired to be a part-time Traffic Reporter and Fill-in News Anchor for a six-station cluster for a company called Adventure Radio. After six months, I became full time News Director. That was three years ago. Now I do Morning Traffic and News, plus a 30-minute weekly Public Affairs show over which I have complete control. 

Over the summer, I started doing morning traffic reports for one of the local television stations. Not being a TV person, I was surprised that I have found it incredibly fun and actually look forward to it now. I never would or could have done that in LA. 

I have also gotten to cover many a sporting event and done a number of other things I never could have done in Los Angeles. 

So to sum up, make the most of your time at the Academy, make the most of every job you get, keep your eyes on your personal priorities, and never let anyone tell you that there is no life outside a major market. 

The Importance of Punctuation

Let's see how many things went wrong here... fill-in anchor, didn't pre-read the script, poorly-written teleprompter copy...

Friday, December 3, 2010

Movies About Radio

"Pirate Radio" is now available on DVD and cable... which got me thinking about other movies with a radio theme: "Talk to Me," "A Prairie Home Companion," "Howard Stern's Private Parts," "FM," "Talk Radio," "Radio Days" (one of this blogger's favorites!) "Power 98," "Play Misty for Me" (a classic!) "Bad Channels," "Airheads."

Have I missed any?  Let me know!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Promoting Promotions

Thanks to this week's lecturer Andy Atkinson, who spoke to radio students about Promotions.  Andy describes himself as a "jack of all trades," and judging by the different types of jobs he's held he really is! While working for the Cumulus Media group of stations, Andy has worked as a Board Op and On-Air Personality, as well as in the Traffic and Promotions departments.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

What is Kyle Matthews Up to Now?

The question is, what isn't he doing now? Earlier this year, 2010 ARB graduate Kyle Matthews packed way too many summer clothes and headed for McCook, Nebraska for his first job in radio. Here's his description of a busy day:

"This is how Monday is going down... Snoozbusters morning show on Coyote Country from 6am to 9am, All Request Hour from 9am to 10am then 10am to 2pm to Cover for Andrew Melia then Headed to the Zrock 102 from 2pm to 7pm and then headed to US 93.9 from 9pm to 12am... Long day ahead of me."

Besides his regular radio show, Kyle also does production and news, interviews and live remotes.
You can hear him here:

Kyle is also preparing for his first cold winter in Nebraska!

Another Reason To Always Be Nice To Your Personal Instructors

You always thought ARB PI/Vocal Coach/Lecturer Michelle Merker was a little scary... now you know for sure!
Michelle produced the movie "Shellter" (with two "L's",) and it's now available on
"Shellter" is graphic horror, and not for the faint of heart.
Check it out... if you dare!