Radio Waves: 1/25/19

Golden Mike awards

Last weekend was a big weekend for many local radio stations (and that other broadcast service called “television” that we are still waiting to catch on). January 19th was the night of the Golden Mike Awards, presented by the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California (RTNA).

The awards are given in two divisions, those stations with large news departments (Division A) and those with not-so-large news departments (Division B). Note that the size of the station itself, or the ratings earned, has no bearing, so the local stations in Division A tend to be the giants in news: KNX (1070 AM) and KFI (640 AM), along with the prestigious stations affiliated with public radio. And those, not surprisingly, dominated. Some categories have only one (open) division.

KNX won in Division A or open categories for Best News Broadcast over 15 minutes, Best Traffic Report, Best Live Coverage of a News Story, and Best News Public Affairs Program. 

KFI won for Best News Broadcast Under 15 Minutes, Best Sports Reporting, Best Continuing Coverage, Best Serious Feature Reporting (under one minute), Best Business and Consumer Reporting, Best Use of Sound, and Best Internet News Reporting.

KPCC (89.3 FM) won for Best Individual Writing, Best Investigative Reporting, Best Light Feature Reporting (one minute or longer), Best Entertainment Reporting, and Best Medical and Science Reporting.

KCRW (89.9 FM) won for Best News Reporting, Best Hard News Series Reporting, Best Serious Feature Reporting (one minute or longer), and Best Government and Political Reporting.

In Division B, the big winner was KCLU (1340 AM, 88.3 FM) for Best Individual Writing, Best Continuing Coverage, Best Live Coverage of a News Story, Best Entertainment Reporting, Best Government and Political Reporting, Best Medical and Science Reporting, and Best Use of Sound.

Other stations in Division B that won were KABC (790 AM) for Best News Broadcast Under 15 Minutes, and Best Traffic Report; KLAC (570 AM) Best Sports Reporting; and a few stations from Central California.

And last but not least: San Diego’s KOGO (600 AM) won for the single division category of Best Feature News Series Reporting.

Congratulations to all the winners. As someone who laments the lack of news reporting on so many radio stations, I am happy that those who do good work get the recognition they so deserve.

Mellow Rock

If I owned a station I would consider this: Numerous emails arrived beginning as soon as last week’s column hit went on line talking of how great it is to have KNX-FM ( back again.

Comments included the likes of:

“Pure joy doesn’t begin the express the depth of my happiness…”

“What a treat!”

“I immediately added it to the My Streams folder on my Grace Mondo internet radio”

I even received a letter from the co-creator of the station, Steve Marshall, who filled in with some of the history:

“It was with pride and pleasure that I read your article on KNX-FM. I was honored to have been the co-creator of KNX-FM’s format back in 1970 along with my college friend, Rodger Layng. We wanted to come up with something for those who had outgrown heavy-metal but were not yet ready for Andy Williams and Rosemary Clooney.

“The format came to be known generically as  “soft rock.” But that was not a term we ever used because the word “soft” could be interpreted to mean deficient. Hence, “The Mellow Sound.” I became program director when Rodger moved on in 1972 and was the daytime voice as well. I remained throughout the ‘70s and left in 1979 to launch a career in television writing for (CBS television’s) WKRP in Cincinnati.

“Your article was sent to me by my best friend, Christopher Ames, who was KNX/FM’s news director and was responsible for the feature 60 Seconds which alternated with The Odyssey File. Thanks so much for remembering us and what we did back then.”