Bill Virgin's Radio Beat January 24, 2008

Includes archive of Bill Virgin's columns fromJ une 2006 - March 2009

Bill Virgin's Radio Beat January 24, 2008

Postby radiofan » Thu Jan 24, 2008 8:50 am

On Radio: Christmas music proves a big hit

Christmas is a special time of year -- especially if you're a radio station playing an all-Christmas music format.

Riding the popularity of its annual Thanksgiving-week-to-Christmas all-holiday-music format, KRWM-FM/106.9 topped the rankings of radio stations in the Seattle-Tacoma market in the fall ratings period, as it did a year ago, according to the Arbitron Co. It had been in a tie for sixth in the summer 2007 ratings book.

KRWM-FM was followed by KUBE-FM/93.3 and KMPS-FM/ 94.1 Tied for fourth were the market's dueling news stations, KIRO-AM/710 and KOMO-AM/ 1000. They were followed by KWJZ-FM/98.9 and KCMS-FM/ 105.3, the latter a contemporary Christian station that also goes all-Christmas in December.

The overall ratings cover listeners 12 and older tuned in between 6 a.m. and midnight Monday through Sunday. They do not include noncommercial stations such as KUOW-FM/ 94.9, which in some recent quarters has actually ranked higher than all other commercial stations.

Station operators and advertising buyers also say that a station's overall rating and ranking matters less than how it does in a particular demographic segment the station is trying to target.

KOMO-AM topped the list for the morning drive (6-10 a.m. weekdays), ahead of KMPS-FM and KRWM-FM.

In middays (defined as 10 a.m.-3 p.m.) and evenings (3-7 p.m.), KRWM-FM placed first, while KUBE-FM was the winner for nights (7 p.m.-midnights) and weekends.

Among the trends to watch in the winter quarter are whether stations heavy on political talk make a rebound in an election year (especially with their recent shake-ups and schedule shifts involving local and national hosts), and what sort of reaction KQMV-FM (Movin 92.5) receives for its new morning team of Monti and Brooke Fox.

In other radio notes:

KUOW-FM/94.9 and KPLU-FM/88.5 have worked out a settlement of their competing applications for a license for a Bellingham station at 90.3. KUOW already operates a translator at that frequency in the Bellingham area, while KPLU serves it on a translator at 88.7. When the Federal Communications Commission opened an application window for a full station at 90.3, both applied. KPLU has since withdrawn its application and KUOW has been awarded the frequency, pending a comment period that ends March 8.

George Dyson, the Bellingham-based author of "Project Orion: The Atomic Spaceship 1957-1965," is interviewed at 10 a.m. Thursday on KUOW-FM.

The Metropolitan Opera performs Rossini's "The Barber of Seville" at 10:30 a.m. Saturday on KING-FM/98.1.

Jim Wilke's "Jazz Northwest" at 1 p.m. Sunday on KPLU-FM features a recent performance by pianist Victor Noriega and his trio.

KRKO-AM/1380 sports talk host Jeff Aaron will be broadcasting from the site of the Super Bowl beginning Monday 3-6 p.m. daily through Friday.

The Sunday edition of Jim French's "Imagination Theatre," heard at 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday on KIXI-AM/880, features a new episode of "The Anthony Rathe Chronicles."

The Arbitron rankings for the fall period:

1 KRWM-FM/106.9

2 KUBE-FM/93.3

3 KMPS-FM/94.1

4 (tie)KIRO-AM/710, KOMO-AM/1000

6 KWJZ-FM/98.9

7 KCMS-FM/105.3.

8 KZOK-FM/102.5

9 (tie) KING-FM/98.1, KKWF-FM/100.7

11 KISW-FM/99.9

12 KBKS-FM/106.1

13 (tie) KJR-FM/95.7, KJR-AM/950.

15 KPLZ-FM/101.5

16 (tie) KBSG-FM/97.3, KQMV-FM/92.5.

18 KJAQ-FM/96.5

19 KTTH-AM/770

20 (tie) KPTK-AM/1090, KVI-AM/570, KNDD-FM/107.7 and KMTT-FM/103.7

24 KIXI-AM/880

25 KFNK-FM/104.9

26 KKMO-AM/1360

27 (tie) KISM-FM/92.9, KNBQ-FM/102.9.

29 (tie) KXXO-FM/96.1 KDDS-FM/99.3, KGNW-AM/820.

P-I reporter Bill Virgin can be reached at 206-448-8319 or

Bill Virgin's Radio Beat Thursdays in the Seattle P-I
Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who couldn't hear the music.
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