And Some Speculation Followup

Followup to our last two items, and some other stuff:

* Clear Channel’s Cincinnati news/talk powerhouse WLW/700 has indeed landed on XM Satellite Radio. The audio quality is not nearly as bad as we’d expected, but it’s not the “FM-ish” more open audio sound that’s been heard on other XM talk channels. Someone compared it to “AM HD”, and we’d say that’s pretty close. We’d say it’s somewhere between regular AM and digital HD/IBOC. It’s not bad, and not difficult to our ears at any rate.

The simulcast carries separate IDs and liners that mention XM 173. As of now, we’re still hearing WLW’s local commercial lineup, but the ability to split for IDs means they will be able to populate those commercials separately at some point soon.

Though the Reds and Bengals won’t be heard on WLW’s XM incarnation, we believe some college sports may be heard (the University of Cincinnati Bearcats, if we recall right). And the move brings ABC News Radio’s Paul Harvey to satellite radio for the first time…though ABC was an early adopter with its “ABC News and Talk” satellite channel on both XM and Sirius, we’re pretty sure they never aired Harvey there. Harvey’s “noontime visit” did indeed air on WLW’s XM simulcast this afternoon.

* We’d like to caution that although the rumor is indeed all over Cleveland radio, the potential move of WSPD/1370 evening host Bob Frantz to a role with WTAM is *not* a done deal at this point. We get the idea that it’s somewhat likely, though, from what we’re hearing. And all of our signs are still pointing towards Frantz eventually occupying the 9 AM-11:30 AM slot currently held by Air America/Clear Channel syndicated host Jerry Springer.

To say Springer’s show hasn’t really been catching on since he replaced Premiere’s Glenn Beck would be, umm, charitable. Add to that the fact that Beck has become a solid performer for the Northeast Ohio stations which picked up him up from WTAM’s leftovers – WHLO/640 Akron and WEOL/930 Elyria – and the move isn’t looking good right now. Whether it happens now, or later, putting a local show in the WTAM midday slot would be a great face-saver down on Oak Tree.

Wither Springer, if this happens? There’s absolutely no room for his live clearance on Clear Channel’s Akron liberal talk WARF/1350 “Radio Free Ohio”…which is already dealing with a traffic jam between Jones’ Stephanie Miller, local legend Joe Finan and AAR’s Al Franken in middays. Maybe they’d slot him late nights after Randi Rhodes and/or Lionel? Or they could add his repeats on weekends, perhaps. If Springer’s not exactly burning up the ratings on WTAM, there’s probably no hurry to find room for him on 1350…assuming the rumored Frantz-to-WTAM-middays scenario happens.

Anyway, though the information is about as solid as we get here at OMW, it hasn’t been nailed down…yet.

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