Martz Upstate NY Names Jonathan Steele Program Director

Martz Communications has named Jonathan Steele as Program Director of CHR “94.7 Hits-FM” WYUL Chateaugay NY/Montreal, Country “Wild Country 96.5” WVNV Malone NY/Cornwall ON and Classic Hits 1490 WICY/102.7 W274BI Malone NY. Steele joins Martz from Alpha Media CHR “Energy 102.3” WNGY Peoria IL where he hosted nights as ‘Miracle’. Steele starts Monday, August 16. Martz Communications Group welcomes Jonathan Steele to their upstate New York & Montreal group of stations. Steele will continue the long tradition of programming excellence with one of the most focused and nimble independent radio groups in the country. On Tuesday August 16th Steele will begin navigating 94.7 Hits FM in Montreal, Wild Country 96.5 WVNV and Classic Hits 102.5 WICY...[Read More]

CHRF Montreal Drops LGBT Format

Just ten months after signing on, Evanov Radio Group has pulled the plug on French LGBT Talk/Hot AC “Radio Fierte” 980 CHRF Montreal. The station is now stunting with Christmas Music branded as “AM 980” with a website at Per the station’s CRTC license, the music is a mix of English and French with all announcements and advertising in French. The logo on the new site happens to be identical to the branding used for Evanov’s network of Soft AC “Jewel” across Canada. That format is heard in the western suburbs of Montreal on Evanov’s 106.7 CHSV-FM Hudson-Saint Lazare.

April Fools Day Stunt Roundup

While the days of the fake format change for the day are mostly behind us, radio still comes out swinging regularly with pranks every April 1. We’re still calling Kars4Kids switch to Kids4Kars as the best move of the day with their commercials airing on multiple stations across the country. Greater Media Classic Hits 105.7 WROR Boston is airing all their non-music elements in Spanish branded as “Samba 105.7“. The station cited the Spanish elements this morning as part of USWTF Regulations for necessary SAP guidelines for radio. In Montreal, Bell Media’s two English language stations traded frequencies for the 7:00am hour. CHR “Virgin Radio 96” aired on 97.7 CHOM with CHOM’s Rock format on 95.9 CJFM. Virgin shared some of the responses here. Down in...[Read More]

CRTC Approves Bell/Astral Merger

The CRTC has approved the second attempt by Bell Canada to acquire Astral Media. “Astral’s application put forward a different approach and responded to many of our concerns” said Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC. “Yet there remained a significant risk that BCE could exert its market power to limit choice and competition. To ensure the public interest is served, we are requiring BCE to invest in new Canadian programming and sell more than a dozen services, and we are putting in place a number of competitive safeguards. This will maintain a healthy and competitive broadcasting system that offers more programming choices to Canadian consumers and citizens and more opportunities for Canadian creators.” BCE must spend $71.5 million on initiatives related to the radio sector, which is eq...[Read More]

CRTC Grants New Montreal AM

The CRTC has granted Tietolman-Tetrault-Pancholy Media a license for a new French Language Sports station on 850 in Montreal. The station, which will operate with 50kW days and 22kW nights, will be the third new AM TTP will be launching in Montreal along with planned English News/Talk on 600 and French News/Talk on 940 that will launch this fall. TTP’s application for the new station describes it as follows: The new station would offer a sports talk format targeting men between the ages of 25 and 54. The applicant proposed to broadcast at least 126 hours of local programming each broadcast week, including 4 hours devoted to newscasts. Programming would include, among other things, debate programs, sports news, live games, interviews and open-line programs. The CRTC decision can be re...[Read More]

Bell/Astral Merger Take 2; Two Ottawa Stations Sold

After rejecting the planned merger of Bell Media and Astral in October, the two companies plans have have been approved by the Competition Bureau. In order to do so, a few swaps will be made with Corus Entertainment and Shaw Media mainly involving ownership stakes in cable television networks but one that has ramifications on the radio industry as Corus will acquire two radio stations in Ottawa: Classic Hits “Boom 99.7” CJOT and Rock “106.9 The Bear” CKQB. Additionally Bell/Astral have agreed to auction off eight additional radio stations. Those stations are Rhythmic AC “Kool 101.5” CKCE Calgary, Urban “Flow 93.5” CFXJ and Classic Hits “Boom 97.3” CHBM Toronto, Oldies “AM 650” CISL, CHR “Virgin Radio 95.3” ...[Read More]

CRTC Denies Bell Media Purchase Of Astral

The CRTC has denied Bell Media’s planned $3.38 Billion acquisition of Astral Media. “BCE failed to persuade us that the deal would benefit Canadians,” said Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC. “It would have placed significant market power in the hands of one of the country’s largest media companies. We could not have ensured a robust Canadian broadcasting system without imposing extensive and intrusive safeguards, which would have been to the detriment of the entire industry.” The proposed transaction raised substantial concerns related to healthy competition, the concentration of ownership in the television and radio markets, vertical integration and the exercise of market power in an anti-competitive manner. The CRTC was not persuaded that the transaction would have provided s...[Read More]

TSN 990 Montreal Moves to 690 Tuesday

While still broadcasting in English, Bell Media Sports “TSN 990” CKGM Montreal will make the move to 690 on Tuesday, September 4. The CRTC approved the move of CKGM from 990 to 690 in November 2011. The move upgrades the station from a highly directional 50kw signal to non-directional formerly clear channel (not the company) 690. The 690 frequency was last home to French News “Info 690” prior to that station going dark in January 2010. The move of CKGM to 690 will pave the way for Evanov to begin preparations to launch its replacement signal on 990. The station is planned to air French language programming directed at Montreal’s Gay and Lesbian community as “Radio Fierte“. CKGM has a pending application with the CRTC to flip from English Sports to ...[Read More]

TSN 990 Montreal Applies To Become RDS 990

Bell Media has applied to the CRTC to flip Sports “TSN 990” CKGM Montreal to French Sports “RDS 990“. The move would be made to get Bell under regulatory ownership limits in Montreal caused by its acquisition of Astral Media earlier this year. The CRTC limits stations in a market by language so moving CKGM from English to French would enable it to retain ownership of the station once it adds Astral’s three English stations in the market. One of those stations, News/Talk 800 CJAD would acquire some of 990’s existing programming including play-by-play of the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens. Last year CKGM received CRTC approval to move to 690 which would enable it to upgrade to 50kW. No word yet from the CRTC if this application or the merger itself will pr...[Read More]

Bell Canada Acquires Astral

Bell Canada has agreed to purchase Astral Media for $3.38 Billion Canadian to combine the two Canadian media giants. The acquisition will combine Bell’s 35 radio stations from the old CHUM group with Astral’s 84 creating numerous overlap over per market cap. The radio stations are an afterthought in this deal as Bell is looking for more video content it will control as it will add 22 English and 13 French networks to its possessions. INSTANT INSIGHT: To Americans the closest comparison to what Bell will be in Canada would be if Time Warner Cable, Verizon, Disney’s TV holdings (ABC & ESPN), and Cumulus were one company holding the #1 or #2 spot in mobile phone, cable television, network television, sports, and radio holdings. Between Bell and Rogers there will be two ...[Read More]

CRTC Approves AM Moves In Montreal

The CRTC has chosen applicants for two vacant AM’s, while allowing a third to move to a new spot with more power. Bell Media’s Sports “TSN Radio 990” CKGM will move to 690, allowing it to upgrade from its directional Class B spot to non-directional. Evanov Communications will take over 990, launching a French language station dedicated to the gay and lesbian community in Montreal billed as “Radio Fierte”. Evanov runs a similar English format in Toronto, “103.9 Proud-FM“. 940 will become home to a French News/Talk operated by Tietolman Tetrault Media.

The Beat Dropping Into Montreal On September 6

Update 8/6: CFQR relaunched as Rhythmic AC “9-2-5 The Beat” today positioned as “The Beat of Montreal” and “Montreal’s Variety Station”. The station’s new lineup consists of Cat Spencer and Sarah Bartok hosting “The Beat Breakfast” from 5:30am to 9am, Donna Saker from 9am to 4pm, AJ Reynolds in afternoons from 4 to 8pm, and Paul Hayes at night. The first hour of 9-2-5 The Beat consisted of: Michael Jackson – Wanna Be Starting Something Bruno Mars – Just The Way You Are Pink – Perfect Black Eyed Peas – Just Can’t Get Enough Bob Marley & The Wailers – Could You Be Loved Adele – Rolling In The Deep Max-A-Million – Sexual Healing Alexandra Stan – Mr. Saxobeat Prince & The...[Read More]

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