Category Archives: Radio

WINS Reporter Eileen Lehpamer To Focus On TV, Going Full Time at News 12

LehpamerNo more splitting time for versatile reporter Eileen Lehpamer. She is ready to take on television in a full-time role. Lehpamer tells Tuned In that she’ll be on the crime and court beat for News 12 Long Island. She’s been a reporter at News 12 since 2003.

But her focus to TV means radio takes a backseat.

Lehpamer grew up in the business at WINS, rising up the ranks in more than 15 years. She began her WINS career as a news production assistant in 1997; a year later she became a writer. By 1999, Lehpamer started sitting at the “editor’s desk.” For the first time, listeners heard more than her name as a WINS reporter in 2001.

“It is bittersweet though to leave WINS.” Lehpamer says. “It is my home.”

The broadcasting bug first bit the native New Yorker at Fordham University’s WFUV.

Now with radio in the rearview mirror, she is ready for the challenge ahead.

“I am extremely excited and looking forward to breaking more stories in my expanded roll at News 12 Long Island,” Lehpamer says.

After her final WINS shift Sunday, Lehpamer jumps into her full-time debut the next morning.

WKJY to Drop Steve Harper as Program Director; Will Remain Morning Show Host

HarperConnoisseur Media is giving into the pressure. It is expected to announce that Steve Harper is losing his managerial role at WKJY 98.3, effective Monday. Multiple sources confirm to Tuned In that Harper will retain his morning show duties.

We’re told that afternoon jock Jon Daniels will be named the station’s program director.

The decision by Connoisseur comes as Long Island watchdog Fair Media Council chose not to withdraw their complaint with the FCC.

As we reported last month, Harper and his morning cohort, Leeana Karlson made headlines for fabricating a bit involving angry anti-gay remarks. Harper wrote on the station’s website thereafter that the hoax was to created to push the hot-button topic upon the public.

The duo was suspended for a week.

Attempts to reach GM Dave Widmer, Daniels, and Harper were not returned.

Photo: Facebook

Seth Everett Joins Mets Radio Team as Pre-Game Host

everett2Now the Mets can officially start the 2014 season.

WOR, which was named the new radio home of the Mets during the off-season, has added the final piece to its broadcast team.

Seth Everett has been named pre- and post-game host. His been heard doing sports reports on 1010 WINS and Fox Sports Radio. Everett joins veteran Mets play-by-play voice Howie Rose and Josh Lewin, teaming for their third season.

Everett tells Tuned In he’s honored to be part of that “first class group of broadcasters.”

“[I] will try my best to engage fans, both on the radio and with social media,” Everett says.

His baseball prowess shined with shows on SiriusXM’s MLB Radio Network. Everett also spent eight years at Major League Baseball Advanced Media where he was a studio host at mlb.com.

Everett succeeds Ed Coleman, the longtime Mets broadcaster who stays behind at WFAN. The sports radio station had broadcast Mets games since its debut in 1987.

“[I] will try to hold a candle to the amazing job Ed Coleman did through the years,” Everett says.

Everett and Co. crack the mic on the season with Opening Day March 31.

Scott Shannon Makes ‘Choice’ to Start Anew at WCBS-FM

shannonCBSFMMonday can’t come soon enough for Scott Shannon. The legendary air personality is about to embark on the next phase of his career–fronting WCBS-FM’s morning show.

Earlier this month, Shannon parted ways with WPLJ, announcing he was retiring from the station after more than two decades co-hosting morning drive with Todd Pettengill.

No one should be surprised by Shannon’s quick action for a return to radio.

“Sometimes when you read, one word is more dominant than the other,”  Shannon tells Tuned In. “But it always said retired from ‘PLJ. I guess no one’s ever retired from a station.”

Without delving into the nuts and bolts of his departure, Shannon says it was his choice to leave after more than 22 years.

“I was involved in the decision,” Shannon says. “It was just time to make a change.”

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Scott Shannon Takes Over Mornings at WCBS-FM

shannonCBSFMScott Shannon, who ended his association with WPLJ earlier this month after more than 20 years, will resurface at WCBS-FM as morning host. The station confirms the veteran air personality starts March 3.

Shannon’s appointment moves Dan Taylor from his usual perch to middays. However, the release did not make mention of Ron Parker, the current midday jock. A CBS Radio spokesperson tells Tuned In that Parker will not return to CBS-FM. “However, we are exploring opportunities to keep him with CBS Radio.”

We’re told that Parker had the best ratings among all the DJs on CBS-FM, particularly in the coveted 25-54 demographic.

Scott Shannon in the Morning will include longtime CBS-FM weatherman Mr. G, along with traffic reporter Joe Nolan.

“Not often does a legendary morning drive personality become available with the experience of waking up New Yorkers for more than 25 years,” Don Bouloukos, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, CBS Radio New York, said in a statement. “CBS-FM is a heritage station, and the perfect place for Hall of Famer Scott Shannon.  We are thrilled to welcome Scott and his award-winning personality to CBS-FM and the CBS Radio family.”

Shannon developed the Morning Zoo format that he brought to New York at WHTZ/Z100 in 1983. He launched the famous “worst to first” campaign as the station went to number one in just 74 days.

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Long Island Media Watchdog Files FCC Complaint, Seeks WJKY Morning Hosts Fired for Same-Sex ‘Hoax’

steve and leeanaIt’s the radio stunt heard ’round the world. With WKJY morning hosts Steve Harper and Leeana Karlson suspended until further notice, the Fair Media Council has weighed in.

The organization has filed a complaint with the FCC demanding the hosts be terminated. Harper is also the station’s program director.

As we reported, the duo came under fire for faking an on-air bit last week about a birthday party for a seven-year-old girl with two dads. However, a mother’s RSVP was posted on the station’s Facebook page, angrily saying her son would not be permitted to attend the party.

Harper later released a statement on their website that fell short of an apology, but said he was trying to stimulate conversation on such a hot button topic.

But Fair Media Council executive director Jaci Clement tells Tuned In there is no silver lining for this story.

“It underscores all that’s wrong in media today, embarrasses Long Island with this uneducated, sophomoric publicity attempt and furthers an unfortunate stereotype,” Clement adds. “Where is the good in creating hurt?”

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GM Suspends WKJY Morning Team “Until Further Notice”

steve-leeanaIn the wake of the controversial on-air staged bit at WKJY/98.3, morning show hosts Steve Harper and Leeana Karlson have had their mics turned off indefinitely.

As we reported over the weekend, Harper, who doubles as the station PD, and Karlson created an online whirlwind after a fake stunt about a same-sex family and a mother’s outrage.

GM Dave Widmer tells Tuned In that the pair have been suspended “until further notice.”

Visitors to the WKJY website were greeted by a “technical difficulties” disclaimer Monday. But a message from management says, “An internal investigation was quickly launched which has resulted in the immediate suspension of Steve Harper and Leeana Karlson from the K-98.3 Morning Show.”

But there is a message from management on the page from Widmer.

“K-98.3 has been serving Long Island for over 25 years and we respect the important role we play in the lives of our listeners. We deeply value our relationship with our listeners and are committed to providing them with the highest level of service because they deserve the very best. I sincerely apologize for the actions of Steve and Leeana, their insensitivity to the hurt it may have caused anyone, and for the breach of trust these actions have caused.”

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WKJY Morning Hosts Purport Anti-Gay Hoax

REJECTED_INVITEX400_0Gays and lesbians have made strides toward equality in recent years. But it’s still a big story when someone notable “comes out of the closet.” Just last week, All-American defensive lineman Michael Sam made headlines by announcing he’s gay. Despite inroads by the LGBT community, gay rights remains a sensitive subject.

Long Island radio station WKJY created a hot button topic by staging a controversial hoax.

This week, the station’s morning team of Steve Harper and Leeana Karlson posted a story on their Facebook page about a boy from Baldwin, N.Y., having a birthday party next month. The page showed the invitation to the boy’s party and a mother’s angry R.S.V.P.

Scrawled at the bottom, sides and back of the invite, the mom wrote: “Tommy will NOT attend. I do not beleive [sic] in what you do and will not subject my innocent son to your ‘lifestyle.'” The ramblings continued with the mother saying, “If you have an issue or need to speak to me…” and added her phone number.

The story is getting the attention of many outlets and websites locally and overseas.

Under fire, Harper, who is also WKJY’s program director, and Karlson posted an apology on the station’s website Friday saying they faked the story “to spur a healthy discourse on a highly passionate topic.”

Instead, the hosts got swept up in a firestorm.

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WINS Anchor Brian Carey Returns to the Air Five Months After Brutal Attack

brian-carey22With the words, “Good afternoon. It’s 23 and partly sunny at 3 o’clock,” Brian Carey cracked the mic as afternoon WINS anchor. Yesterday marked his first on-air appearance following a much-publicized horrific beating last September in his Manhattan apartment. The assault left Carey with a broken jaw, shattered eye socket, and bleeding on the brain.

The veteran newsman broke the format momentarily, alluding to his personal struggles at the top of the newscast.

“It’s so good to be back,” Carey told listeners in a strong voice before reading the headlines.

Even longtime traffic reporter Matt Ward couldn’t miss a chance to send well wishes to his colleague.

“Good afternoon, Brian, and welcome back.”

Elton Anthony was charged three days after the assault. His next court date is March 17. 

There is conflicting information on how Carey knew Anthony. 1010 WINS’ website states that he was the anchor’s house cleaner and personal assistant. Multiple reports, though, refer to Anthony as a homeless man.

Emmis Buys WBLS and WLIB for $131 Million in Cash

BLSEmmis is adding to its New York stockpile. The Indianapolis-based media company has agreed to acquire Urban A/C WBLS, the number two station in New York, and Urban Gospel sister station WLIB-AM from YMF Media.

The price tag is $131 million in cash to be paid in two installments, approximately $55 million after the FCC grants the licenses, expected in the summer. The second amount–$76 million–will be paid in February 2015.

The transaction once again would give Emmis three stations in New York, joining WHQT/Hot 97.

“Today’s announcement is indicative of our belief in the US radio industry and our desire to increase our footprint in the nation’s largest market,” Jeff Smulyan, President & CEO of Emmis Communications, said in a statement. “Emmis has deep ties to the New York African-American community, and it is with great pride we take the helm of these iconic stations.”

Last year, WBLS and WLIB reported approximately $32 million of net revenues and more than $16 million of station operating expenses..

The WBLS/WLIB operations and studios have been co-located with HOT 97 since 2012.

Reportedly, Deon Levingston, CEO of YMF Media and General Manager of WBLS/WLIB, will become GM of Emmis’ New York cluster when the Local Marketing Agreement commences.

YMF took control of WBLS/WLIB in October 2012 after parent company Inner City Broadcasting filed for bankruptcy.