Hawaii Radio & Television Guide
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September 29, 2003

Big Island Radio Station KKOA Sold

The last of the recently acquired stations by Pacific Radio Group was sold over the weekend to Dan J. Alpert's Herb Radio for $400,000. The station is Volcano's KKOA 107.7 FM. Alpert is an attorney from Arlington Virginia who represented Pacific Radio in recent station acquisitions.


Hearing Impaired Community Upset Over "Ice" TV Special

Last week's airing of Edgy Lee's film, "Ice: Hawaii's Crystal Meth Epidemic" has caused a controversy among the state's hearing impaired community because the program was not closed captioned. A spokesperson for the Aloha Association of the Deaf expressed their disappointment at the lack of close captioning and at the comments made by Big Island Mayor Harry Kim regarding a remark he made on the show.


September 26, 2003

Big Island Radio Stations Sale Finalized

The sale of Maverick Media's Big Island radio stations was finalized by the FCC, officially making Maui's Pacific Radio Group the new owners of KKBG FM 97.9 (Hilo's K-BIG), KHLO 850 AM, KKOA FM 107.7FM and West Hawaii's KLEO 106.1 FM which simulcasts K-BIG's programming. The stations were purhcased by Pacific for $2.2 million.

Pacific Radio also bought radio stations formerly owned by Big Island Radio Group. Because of ownership limits, Pacific has to divest of three of them. Two have already been sold.

Hilo's New West Broadcasting Corp. recently bought KAOY FM from Pacific and will convert that station's programming to simulcast their KWXX FM's Island music format next week. The acquisition of the radio stations on the Big Island, makes Pacific Radio Group the largest owner of radio stations in the state of Hawaii with 15. The company will run 9 stations on the Big Island and 6 on Maui.


Ice Film Pre-Empts Prime Time Programming

Wednesday night's unprecedented TV simulcast of Edgy Lee's 1-hour film documentary "Ice: Hawaii's Crystal Meth Epidemic" cut into the first hour of prime time premieres for 5 of Hawaii's major network channels as well as PBS's KHET, Oceanic's OCI 16 and Olelo Community Television. The hour-long documentary hosted by former KGMB reporter Matt Levi featured interviews by victims and users of crystal meth, their friends and families as well as officials from the law enforcement community including U.S. Attorney Ed Kubo and Honolulu City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle.

The program cost the broadcast TV stations at least $10,000 in lost prime time advertising revenues to air this program in the public's interest. TV stations KHON, KFVE and KHET followed the documentary up with their own specials expanding on the topic of crystal meth.


Join the discussion on the Ice TV special here.

KHNL's News 8 and KITV's Channel 4 News Are Reader Favorites

The Hawaii Radio & Television Guide's first, unscientific online poll of the year finds that our readers like KHNL's News 8 and KITV 4 News the best among local island newscasts. Our small sample size which is probably not a reflection of the overall viewing audience picked those two stations as having their favorite newscasts over KHON and KGMB TV, which both fell behind the choice of watching no local news at all. Our tiny sample of 63 respondents echo the findings of past informal polls conducted at this website where KHNL usually ended up on top. This of course is quite contrary to the official Nielsen ratings which has shown KHON TV's newscast as the market's ratings winner.

The polling period lasted for a week and ended today. A new poll will be added to the site soon.

September 22, 2003

Weekend News Items: Austin Vali, Clear Channel, Ice TV Special

KRTR 96 FM vice president & general manager Austin Vali will be leaving the station and Hawaii. He heads for New York later this year where Cox has appointed him marketing manager for Long Island New York radio stations WBAB FM and WBLI FM. Replacing Vali will be KCCN & KINE FM VP & GM Mike Kelly. More details at this link.

Clear Channel Communications, one of the nation's largest radio conglomerates and owners of Honolulu radio stations KSSK AM & FM, KUCD FM, KDNN FM, KIKI FM, KHVH AM and KHBZ AM is trying to improve its public image and perception as being one of the industry's big bad boys. More details at this link.

Edgy Lee's film "ICE: Hawaii's Crystal Meth Epidemic" is being heavily promoted this week as it makes its debut this Wednesday night on 9 local TV channels and Oceanic's OCI 16. The show will be preceeded and followed by "town meeting" types of programs on a couple of stations airing the film. Details at this link.

"99.5 Bob FM" is now on the air 24-7 as a Hot AC rock format at New Wave Broadcasting's KHUI radio.

September 19, 2003

Bus Strike Hits Airwaves Again

Teamster Union Leaders were on the air yesterday in a heated discussion with bus riders, drivers and the general public over a simulcast of the Perry & Price morning radio show aired on KSSK AM & FM as well as KHVH AM. Angry callers and supporters of the striking drivers got the opportunity to either grill or praise Teamster Vice President Jim Santangelo who was brought in from the parent union on the mainland to help support the local union.

The on-air debate was covered by the major broadcast and print media, who clammored to the cramped studios at KSSK to cover the on-air ruckus.


September 18, 2003

Pacific Radio Group Sells Another Big Island Station

Pacific Radio Group which recently acquired KHWI 92.7 FM from Big Island Radio has sold the property to new local owners for $350,000. Aloha Radio Group, Inc. operated by Big Island Radio's GM Nelson Ray Parker and Sales Mgr. Frank Hooten are the buyers. They will take over the radio station on October 1, changing its format from rock to urban contemporary. The station will be operated under a time brokerage agreement until the sale is approved by the FCC.

Pacific Radio is required by FCC regulations to divest itself of at least 3 radio stations that they recently purchased in order to meet ownership limit quotas. Pacific recently sold Kona radio station KAOY FM to New West Broadcasting which will convert that station from an album rock format to a simulcast with its island music format broadcast on Hilo's KWXX FM.


KHVH to Revamp Talk Radio Lineup

Listeners of Hawaii's Talk Radio KHVH AM 830 will wake up to a revised afternoon and evening talk show line-up starting next Monday, September 22. Program director Paul Wilson will be moving the Michael Savage show permanently to sister station KHBZ 990 AM from 4 to 7pm 6 days a week. That will shift the afternoon and evening program line-up as follows:

Rusty Humphries 1 to 3 pm
Mike Buck 3 to 7 pm
Coast to Coast with George Noory 7pm to 2 am

KHVH's morning drive line-up will remain the same with Rick Hamada from 6 to 10 am and Rush Limbaugh from 10 am to 1 pm.

Art Bell will rejoin Coast to Coast on the weekends doing a broadcast on Saturday and Sunday nights. Coast to Coast airs on both KHVH and Maui's KAOI AM in the Hawaii market.


September 17, 2003

U.S. Senate Votes to Rollback FCC Ownership Ruling

The United States Senate voted 55 to 40 to rollback new Federal Communications Commission rules regarding broadcast station ownership. The FCC rules broadcast station rules were changed in June 2003 which would allow conglormerates to own a larger percentage of properties in a single market. It also permits the cross-ownership of newspapers and TV stations in many markets.

The resolution sponsored by North Dakota Senator Byron L. Dorgan (D) garnered the support of a dozen Republicans including Mississippi Senator Trent Lott (R) despite the possibility that President George W. Bush may veto the resolution if it passes the House.


FCC Setting Limits on Media Concentration (PDF)

September 16, 2003

"The Breeze" to Become "Bob"; Dan Cooke's Back on the Radio

New Wave Broadcasting's KHUI 99.5 FM will become "Bob", a music format that will feature a hot a/c mix of rock hits from the 80s and 90s. The former "Breeze" which featured a Hawaiian music format was taken off the air on Saturday and is now transitioning to the new format. The music will feature artists such as Pearl Jam, John Mellencamp, Bruce Springsteen and Tom Petty. New Wave is setting the station up to attract listeners from classic rock's KAHA FM and a/c's KSSK and KRTR.

Speaking of KRTR, the Cox owned station has replaced morning drive personality Chris Reiser with former KITV Channel 4 News anchor Dan Cooke. Cooke started his new morning drive stint this week and is teamed with morning news personality Laurie Ann Solomon and traffic reporter Danielle Tucker. Station executives plan to groom Cooke as the next big morning personality to take over from the venerably enduring Perry & Price of KSSK fame. Cooke had previously worked in radio on Hawaii stations K108, KORL, KKUA, KQMQ and KRTR itself.


Statewide Simulcast Focuses on Hawaii's "Ice" Crisis

Hawaii's rampant crystal methamphetamine ("ice") use and its devastating effects on the local community will be examined in an unprecedented one-hour television simulcast on Wednesday, September 24. "ICE: Hawaii's Crystal Meth Epidemic" will be shown commercial-free on nine local television stations that evening from 7 to 8 p.m. The stations are: KBFD, KFVE, KGMB, KHET (PBS Hawaii) KHNL, KHON, KIKU, KITV, Oceanic Time Warner's OC16.

The cooperation exhibited by Hawaii's major network affiliates agreeing to a primetime simulcast is a first for a statewide media market.

The show, which was directed by award-winning filmmaker Edgy Lee, and produced by Jeffrey Mueller, reveals riveting stories of ice addicts, children of addicts, and foster parents who care for newborns of women addicted to ice. The film details how meth affects the community at large, and how it is linked directly to an increase of violent crime; child, elder and spousal abuse; theft; rising insurance and retail rates, social services, medical costs; and human costs that transcend dollar amounts.

A host of international and local leaders - many of whom have been on the frontlines leading the fight against ice use - are also included in the film. Included are Gov. Linda Lingle & Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona; Sen. Daniel Inouye and Congressman Ed Case; Dr. Evan Dobelle, Pres. University of Hawaii; DOE Superintendent Pat Hamamoto; University of Hawaii Head Football Coach June Jones; and Mayor Harry Kim, County of Hawaii and Family Court Judge Frances Wong.

To further enhance the impact of the simulcast, KHON, KHNL, and PBS Hawaii will broadcast special programs after the film (check local listings). Television and radio re-broadcasts are also scheduled on KINE, KCCN, KXME, KRTR, KXME, and KGMZ.

-- Taken from a press release sent to the Hawaii Radio & Television Guide

KHON TV Special to Feature Ukelele Wiz Jake Shimabukuro

A half hour TV special airing tomorrow night on KHON TV, Channel 2 will feature ukelele sensation Jake Shimabukuro. The program will highlight Shimabukuro's recent concert tour of Japan, where he is becoming one of their biggest international pop stars. Shimabukuro is best known as being the former ukelele wiz for the group Pure Heart of the 1990s before embarking on a solo career. He has most recently been seen in regular airings of an Oceanic Cable TV commercial touting the Roadrunner internet service.

"Jake Live in Japan" airs tomorrow on Channel 2 starting at 9:30 PM, and is hosted by Ron Mizutani.


September 15, 2003

Kapiolani Park TV Special Airs on Channel 9

Local actress Elizabeth Lindsey Buyers hosts a tribute and documentary on “Kapiolani Park,” premiering tomorrow night at 9 p.m. on KGMB TV Channel 9. The large and very popular park has been a part of the Honolulu-Waikiki landscape for more than 120 years. The TV special looks back at those years through a series of old still photos and vintage film reels. Kapiolani Park encompasses the Honolulu Zoo, Waikiki Shell, the Aquarium and the Natatorium Memorial.

A review of the upcoming program is available at this link.

September 13, 2003

"The Breeze" Leaves The Airwaves

Honolulu radio station KHUI 99.5 FM more popularly known as "The Breeze" has apparently gone off the air for good with a new, temporary format of old radio broadcasts and the late Johnny Cash's music filling the airspace this afternoon.

As several people have emailed me this morning, they all say that it is a sad day for traditional and contemporary Hawaiian music on the air.

The Breeze went on the air only last May (2002) with a line-up that featured among others, Ola Souza who was doing morning drive, Kimo Villarimo and Mahlon Moore. Shortly after its debut last May the station broke out during their first ratings book with a 4.6 share (Summer 2002), but has steadily been on a decline ratings wise going to 3.8, 3.3 and a 2.9 during the spring 2003 period.

One of our message board posters had this to say:

"Gone is the finest in traditional, contemporary Hawaiian music as well as good ole island music in general. They fought to play the best music created in the islands-non of that pseudo reggae junk... they featured new and old artists alike (unlike other local stations that play the same 12 artists hour after hour)."

"To the staff, on-air talent and crew of the Breeze-a big Aloha and Mahalo for what you tried to do for this island and it's people."


Big Island's Album Rock KAOY FM Sold

Kona's KAOY FM 101.5, the last remaining bastion of album rock music on the Big Island's west coast has been sold by owner Pacific Radio Group to New West Broadcasting out of Hilo, Hawaii. The station will switch its format from album rock to a simulcast of New West's KWXX FM's Island and Contemporary music format from Hilo.

The sale is expected to close in October. This comes after the FCC has lifted a freeze on radio station sales and ownership transfers.

Pacific Radio Group has been on a roll recently acquiring several radio stations on the Big Island of Hawaii.


Bus Union and Owners Take Issues to the Airwaves

The 19-day old Honolulu City bus strike has taken to the airwaves with attack ads targeting Mayor Jeremy Harris. The ads are being paid for by the Teamsters union Local 996 and highlight funds being squandered by the mayor on various expensive projects and programs. The mayor has consistently stated that the city has no money to fund pay raises for bus drivers.

Oahu Transit Services (OTS) has also waged a media campaign against the union utilizing the airwaves in messages that targeted the general public as well as the union. Their ads featured a retired school teacher that urged the drivers to go back to work and be patient about the pay increases.

Mayor Harris meanwhile has taken to the airwaves himself defending the city's position on the strike issues reiterating the city's lack of funds for pay raises. He was featured on several newscasts this week as well as on a weekly one-hour segment on the Mike Buck afternoon radio show on KHVH AM 830.


"Good Politics Radio" to Launch on September 15

A new online radio service will launch this coming Monday. It is a free service opened to all internet users via their website goodpoliticsradio.com. The purpse of Good Politics Radio is to "allow people already in office to communicate with their constituency. We feel that by allowing candidates, current office holders, and political activist groups an opportunity to communicate their views via a radio internet program, that Good Politics Radio will become their favorite tool. "

There will be one internet radio station in every state across America, and in the near future, Canada. Schools will be offered an opportunity to use the station as a learning tool. Our young people from junior high school through college levels, across this nation will have access to understanding who represents their political interests and what they stand for.

The station is in partnership with the Real One Network and is getting sponsorship billing by LIVE 365.com. For more information go to their website:


September 9, 2003

Local Radio Station Sales & Transfers Suspended

Transfer and sale of several Hawaii radio stations remain in limbo by a ruling set by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. That ruling has delayed the implementation of new ownership rules set up by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) earlier this year. "In light of the court's decision, the commission has established a freeze, effective immediately and until further notice, on the filing of all applications using FCC Form 301, 314 or 315 that involve commercial stations," says a spokesperson from the FCC.

Sales and ownership transfers have effected Maverick Media (who owns stations on Oahu and the Big Island), Pacific Radio Group (interested in buying Maverick's Hilo radio stations KHLO-AM 850, KKBG-GM 97.9, KLEO-FM 106.1 and KKOA-FM 107.7), a sale of a group of Big Island Radio stations (KIPA 620 AM, KPVS FM, KAPA FM 100, KHWI FM, KLUA FM, KAGB FM, KAOY FM, and KKON AM) to Pacific.

A sale of New Wave Broadcasting Inc.'s KORL AM 690 to H.Hawaii Media is also being affected by the freeze. When that deal goes through, KORL AM will change its programming from Radio Disney to Japanese. Several other ownership transfers are also in limbo.


August 25, 2003

Veteran Jock Ed Kanoi Returns to Honolulu

Erika Engle writes in her latest "Buzz" column that longtime personality Ed Kanoi will be returning to Honolulu’s airwaves when he does the afternoon drive with Maverick Media’s KAHA FM (The Big Kahuna) 105.9. Kanoi returns to Honolulu after spending about a year doing radio at Maverick Media’s Hilo radio station, KKBG FM (KBIG), which was sold earlier this month to Pacific Radio Group, Inc. Kanoi worked with the old KKUA radio station in the 1970s and spent several years on Kauai doing radio there.

Engle also reports that Alan Yamamoto will be taking a position as national sales manager for Maverick Media after leaving a job he held with competitor New Wave Broadcasting. Maverick Media owns and operates radio stations KUMU FM & AM and KAHA FM.


Cable Access Hearing Today

The State Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) will be holding a public hearing today starting at 4:30 p.m. at the Queen Liliuokalani Building Room 404. DCCA is "currently evaluating issues relating to Public, Education and Government (PEG) Access in Hawaii." This will be a chance for community producers as well as the public to make comments regarding local PEG access on Oahu and perhaps help the DCCA implement changes to the operations at PEG channels.


Oceanic 16 to Go 24-7

Oceanic Cable recently announced that OCI 16 (analog) will be converting to a 24 hour, 7 day-a-week full time local broadcast cable channel. The program content on OCI 16 will consist of local programming only ranging from such popular fare as "Local Kine Grinz" and "Tiny TV" to new programs such as "Blood of the Samurai" and "The June Jones Show," featuring the University of Hawaii’s highly paid football coach.

All of the program content on OCI 16 will be of local origination and is expected to boost advertising revenue for Oceanic Cable, a owned by AOL-Time Warner. Prior to OCI 16’s conversionk, the channel already aired 40% local content with the remaining 60% filled by The Game Show Network (GSN). GSN will be moving to their own channel.

Programming on OCI 16 is seen statewide on all Oceanic owned cable systems.


August 13, 2003

Maui's Pacific Radio Group Buys 8 Big Island Radio Stations

Maui's Pacific Radio Group is buying eight Big Island Radio Broadcasting Company stations. The statuions effected by the sale include Hilo's KIPA AM 620, KPVS FM 95. 9, KHWI FM 92.7, KAPA FM 100.3 and Kona's KLUA FM 93.9, KAOY FM 101.5, KKON AM 790 and KAGB 99.1FM in Waimea.

The sale will create the State's largest radio ownership group as Pacific Radio already owns 6 stations on Maui.

They plan to sell 3 of their Big Island radio stations to confirm with FCC rules limiting the amount of stations a conglomerate can own. Local buyers are interested in the Big Island stations.

Pacific Radio's purchase of four Big Island radio stations owned by Maverick Media was expected to close in early June. That sale is still pending. The Maverick Media stations include KHLO AM 850, KKBG FM 97.9, KLEO 106.1 FM and KKOA 107.7 FM.

Several of the Big Island stations transacted in the sale operate in cross-island simulcasts as they air the same programming in both Hilo and Kona operations. Possible changes in station programing was not disclosed.


Oceanic Channel Lineup to Change

Channel positions for Oceanic Cable's analog subscribers will be changing on September 3. More than half of the analog channels will be changing channel numbers as the State's largest cable firm reorganizes the lineup in an effort to group similar services near each other. Analog subscribers will be able to get up to 78 channels including most of the local broadcast stations, public access channels as well as standard and optional cable networks. Oceanic's Channel 16 will be broadcasting 24-7 with its mostly local content.

Digital subscribers will be getting several new cable services added to their lineup.

The cable industry has come under fire for charging extraordinarily high monthly rates. Oceanic has historically increased their cable TV rates a few months after major channel changes or additions to their service.


Perry & Price Celebrate 20 Years on the Air

Honolulu's highest rated morning radio show celebrates its 20th anniversary on the air this month. KSSK's Michael W. Perry and Larry Price took the reins of the highly rated morning show after the death of the legendary J. Akuhaed Pupule (Hal Lewis) in 1983.

Michael W. Perry had been working with KSSK since the late 1970s in the afternoon drive before being paired with Larry Price in the mornings. Price was working for the station at that time as VP of public relations and publicity. He was more well known as being a coach for the University of Hawaii football team in the 1970s and had worked previously for Governor George Ariyoshi.

The durable morning team has ruled the morning ratings heap for nearly all of the 20 years they have been together. Their morning show airs on KSSK AM & FM Monday through Fridays from 5 to 10 am with a live Saturday morning show held weekly at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel's Hanohano room.


Media Consolidation Subject of Weekly Article

The Honolulu Weekly recently published an article regarding the FCC's decision to allow more media conglomoration within the print, television and radio industry. Coming under fire is the local joint ownership of TV stations KHON and KGMB by Emmis Communications Corp. The two statons have been jointly operated since 2001 after Emmis acquired ownership of KGMB after buying all of the stations operated by its former owner, Lee Enterprises.

Politicians, media watcdog groups and even some people within the industry have come to oppose the expansion of joint ownership by media companies. Congress is looking into overturning the ruling by the FCC which went into effect on June 2.


July 30, 2003

Spring Arbitrons Draw the Usual Stations into the Top 5

By now just about anyone knows that Honolulu's top radio stations are KSSK FM, KCCN FM, KRTR FM, KINE FM and KUMU FM. All of those stations command a significant chunks of Honolulu's overall ratings with share percentages of 5.0 and higher between the hours of 6AM and midnight with listeners 12 and older. In corporate circles, Cox claims a great majority of the top 5 with KCCN, KRTR and KINE. Clear Channel's KSSK has long been number one, and still dominates the morning drive with the Perry & Price morning team from 6 to 10 a.m.

The contenders in this book include KDNN "Island Rhythmn" 98, KSSK AM 590 (both Clear Channel), KAHA 105.9's "Big Kahuna" Classic Rock (Maverick Media), with Cox's "Oldies Channel" KGMZ 107.9 FM tied with New Wave's "Da Bomb" KDDB FM 102.7 in positions 5 through 9.

Just outside the top 10 stations are KIKI FM, KQMQ FM and KXME FM tied with 3.8 shares followed by KHVH Talk Radio 830 AM.

More on the ratings can be found here: KSSK STILL TOPS | HONOLULU OVERALL ARBITRONS

EDITOR'S NOTE:I am on vacation from July 30 to August 9. No updates will be made at this time.

DCCA Seeks Public Comment on Cable TV Access

The State Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs will be holding a series of public comment meetings for the purpose of addressing issues dealing with Statewide Cable TV Access. The meetings will be held on August 12, 13, 19, 25 and 27 on all of the major Hawaiian islands. A complete schedule can be downloaded from this link.

The DCCA is currently evaluating issues relating to Public, Education and Government cable TV access with a goal of developing a statewide plan that set forth a statewide policy.

The public is being invited to comment and participate in the process. This will present the public with the opportunity to make change in PEG access policy to help the DCCA implement a new plan.

PEG Access policy decisions will affect the operations of Olelo, Ho'ike, Akaku and Na Leo public access cable TV operations, which are funded through access fees in monthly cable subscriber bills.

Email comments are also being solicitated by the DCCA. You can send your comments in to the following email address: cabletv@dcca.hawaii.gov.

DCCA Cable TV Division | Olelo Community Television | Akaku (Maui) | Ho'ike (Kauai) | Na Leo (Big Island)

Big Island Cable TV Subscribers Blacked Out

Big Island residents were without Cable TV and high speed internet service for most of this past Monday after a construction crew working on the Kona side of the island accidentally cut a main fiber cable. The outage effected all areas of the island serviced by Oceanic.


July 11, 2003

KITV To Reimburse State for Japan Trip

KITV Channel 4 will reimburse the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau an estimated $4,100. The reimbursement comes after criticism was levied upon the station for sending reporter Mahealani Richardson and a cameraman to accompany Governor Linda Lingle on her trip to Japan this week.

The trip was arranged by the HVCB with the agreement of the Hawaii Tourism Authority and the Governor's office in an effort to brng timely coverage to Hawaii audiences. The station has been airing reports on it 10PM newscast for most of this week.

Questions about the trip may come up in a Legislative hearing scheduled for 10AM today.

More details can be found at this link. | KITV's Story



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