PD’s Julie Washington on Meltzer Dismissal, WERE’s Urban Talk

OMW had been hearing that the Plain Dealer’s Clint O’Connor was no longer covering local radio, and it appears that the PD’s local TV columnist – Julie Washington – has added radio to her plate.

Washington’s latest missive touches on the recent exit of Clear Channel/Cleveland market manager and regional VP/GM Jim Meltzer from the CC World Domination HQ on Oak Tree. And from her description, it sounds like Meltzer’s exit was a push, at least when it comes to his last day in the building…if not before. She also gets in touch with WKDD/98.1 morning star Matt Patrick, who spoke highly of Meltzer’s handling of station transitions, and of high-profile talent like, well, Matt Patrick.

Where will Meltzer land? It appears he has to wait out a non-compete agreement in Northeast Ohio, for at least some period of time. But he was apparently already scouting out opportunities, and looking at leaving on his own some time next year.

The PD’s Washington also finally picks up on the flip of Radio One brokered talker WERE/1300 to an urban talk station, powered mainly by the company’s 10 AM-7 PM lineup of nationally syndicated personalities. But it looks like WERE will be making morning drive a live and local shift, and may already be auditioning hosts.

To that end, a Radio-Info Cleveland board poster reports that this morning, he heard the last minutes of an audition by Cleveland market veteran Ronnie Duncan, who’s counted WOIO/19-WUAB/43 on his resume along with sports talker WKNR, back in the days when it was on 1220 AM.

Duncan would certainly be a strong candidate for AM drive on the new urban talker. We’d also bring up former WKNR host Kendall Lewis, but he recently took a sports talk gig in Memphis. And another former local sportscaster, ex-WTAMer David Kelly, is in that same market on another radio station, doing play-by-play for the AAA Memphis Redbirds.

Local Radio One officials tell the PD that the new talk format will start up on WERE on January 16th. We’re wondering who Radio One will hire nationally to host the still-open 10 AM-1 PM slot, with Rev. Al Sharpton and Atlanta’s “Two Live Stews” filling the other time slots…

Speak Your Mind