Radio Waves: 9/6/19

Sluggo to help program the music … on KLOS

You may know the name Doug “Sluggo” Roberts from his work on KROQ (106.7 FM). He’s also done work for sister station Jack-FM (KCBS-FM, 93.1) and SiriusXM as well, though more behind the scenes.

Now KLOS has tapped him to work with programmer Keith Cunningham as the station’s new assistant programmer and music director, effective August 26th.

Hmm … could this mean a new direction for KLOS as they evolve under new owner Meruelo Media? An interesting idea. I’ve long thought that KLOS could easily break out of the classic rock rut and become more of an “Active Rock” station, one that plays the best of the old and the best of the new. And in case you’re wondering, yes, “Active Rock” is an official format name recognized by the industry.

Personally, I’d like that. I get tired of the same old, same old, and I really don’t want to be one of those old guys who just listens to old music. In don’t want to know every song I hear …

Friday Jonesy

Speaking of KLOS, former Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones has been hosting Jonesy’s Jukebox mid-days Monday through Friday for almost four years. At least until recently.

As of a few weeks ago, the show has been relegated to Fridays only, noon to 2 p.m.

Jones’ show is one of the reasons I think KLOS can so easily go in almost any direction, as Jones played basically what he wanted and helped give the station a more open feeling to the playlist. But I have been told that the ratings were not necessarily what management wanted, so it is not too surprising to hear of the cut. Officially, the word is that Jones wanted to devote more time to other projects.

The Big Move

Speaking still of KLOS, the station has been broadcasting out of the Culver City studios it has been in since it and former sister station KABC (790 AM) moved into the new digs a few blocks away from the longtime old La Cienega studios and from when it was owned by Cumulus Media.

Late September is going to be the big moving day, when the station makes the trek to Burbank and joins other Meruelo Media stations, including Power 106 (KPWR, 105.9 FM).

Trojans on KABC

With so many teams available to be seen on television, it is rare that a radio station’s play by play adds to the ratings. Indeed, carrying the Rams football games hurt The Sound (now KKLQ, 100.3 FM) so much that it was a cruel joke to listeners and management alike every time the team played and the station had to drop regular programming.

But it may be different for KABC and the USC Trojans. KABC already has no listeners, so the idea that KABC will carry Trojans football and basketball starting in Fall (meaning now) could actually help the station, even if game ratings are relatively low.

It’s a five-year agreement, so I may have to deal with it when I take over the station and start playing music. Until then, though, catch all the USC games on the Big 790.

Honoring Engelbert

The Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters — continuing its recent practice of recognizing people who are not broadcasters — will honor Engelbert Humperdinck at its next luncheon on September 20th at the AirTel Plaza Hotel in Van Nuys.

Though he may not have been a radio or television broadcaster, he was all over the radio and television in the 1970s with a sound described by some (including Wikipedia, where I stole the quote) as “one of the finest middle-of-the-road balladeers around.” I imagine there are few Boomers or older who have not heard “After the Lovin’,” one of his biggest hits. The song was nominated for a Grammy Award and was performed on NBC Television’s Tonight Show back when Johnny Carson was the host.

No names have been announced for the dais, but I have an odd feeling that this may end up being quite an entertaining program.