Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The King of Nostalgia!

"Nostalgia is going through the roof, it's the only way to fly. ...any radio station today that's in the red, within six months of going to all nostalgia, they're in the black. There are at least six 50,000-watt stations doing it now."

Joe Franklin was way off. Though this was written in 1994 he should have already known. It's been a decade, and he was wrong then and wrong now. I do appreciate Joe Franklin's enthusiasm. I like the format myself and I do reccomend reading the Katz Media report on the adult standards radio Power point page here. But to sum it up, in 1990 the average share for a standards outlet was a 4.4. Now it's a 2.4. He's just plain wrong. But unpopular doesn't mean bad. Actually, I've found it to often to mean the opposite.
Adult Standards is aimed at what they refer to condescendingly in marketing literature as "mature adults." It just means anyone older then the age of 50 that isn't dead. Unless you're in Chicago. In Chicago the dead get to vote and everything. It is primarily on the AM band because people under 50 dont listen to AM radio for music.

The format initially known as "Middle of the Road" (MOR) , first acheived popularity in the late 1970s as a way to reach that 50+ group with music programming. As a group they find AC to me too modern and Beautiful Music too much like waiting for the dentist.

The reason that Joe Franklin (real name Joseph Fortgang) was being overtly enthusiastic about a dying format is that he was already known then as "the king of nostalgia". Franklin's career worked in reverse. after a huge career in television hosting the first TV talk show ever, he moved to radio. Franklin played his old records on WOR-AM on Saturday evenings.

The old devil is still alive, and currently interviews celebrities on the Bloomberg Radio Network. His program is actually made at his restaurant in the heart of Manhattan’s theatre district called Joe Franklin’s Memory Lane Restaurant. When the restaurant was designed, in the center of the front dining room they built a triangular stage where, several times a week, Franklin interviews various celebrities via a Soundcraft RM100 broadcast mixer. The man holds the Guinness Book of World Records award for hosting the most TV shows, a total of 31,015.
His old TV show was huge. Franklin interviewed over 10,000 guests during his 43-year TV run. These included five U.S. Presidents, and screen legends such as Charlie Chaplin, John Wayne, Marilyn Monroe and Cary Grant.
FACT: It was in 1986, at the eviction sale of legendary broadcaster Joe Franklin, that Henry Sapoznik discovered his first Yiddish radio disk. Thus beginning the Yiddish Radio Project.