It must be something in the air — the same week that a reader sends in a mention of the Aloha Joe radio show, I find out that Aloha Joe celebrates 20 years of webcasting this month.
The reader’s mention was in response to the question of where to find music of the Hawaiian Islands.
Originating from a studio in Lakewood, AlohaJoe.com features Hawaiian music 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Aloha Joe himself does live programming from 9 to 11 a.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 to 10 a.m. Saturday. These programs are played back on Sundays and are available on demand on the website.
I turned the music on while writing this, and I have to admit it put me in a particularly good mood. It truly takes you to the islands. Aloha Joe claims his station is among the most popular Internet stations of its type, and is among the longest running as well — perhaps the longest running of its type.
And yet, the main stream is just one of eight — count ’em, eight — Hawaiian Island-based formats, among them Ukulele Island, Slack Key Island and Relaxation Island.
Twenty years. Congratulations, Aloha Joe. Mahalo for the great music.
KIIS-FM topped the ratings again for March, barely beating out sister stations KOST and KBIG as owner Clear Channel takes a 1-2-3 sweep in the Nielsen ratings, formerly known as Arbitron. It was a close one all the way down, with KIIS earning a 5.1 percent share of the audience, KOST at 5.0 and KBIG at 4.9. Statistics students would tell you that those differences are essentially insignificant. Rounding out the top five were Power 106 at 4.6 and KRTH at 4.2.
It appears the days of KFI at the top are gone, at least for a while. Still the talk leader by a wide margin, it was only recently that the station was in the top five itself. Now it appears to have settled in at a still-respectable ninth place and 3.2 share. That’s about what the station has been averaging since late last year, when the demographic weighting and methodology of calculating the ratings by Nielsen was changed (and in my opinion bastardized) to give more weight to certain demographics while keeping the sample size far too small.
The net result is that far too few people are determining the ratings for some stations and just a few listeners can make a huge change in the results. Unfortunately, it’s the only game in town so we’re stuck with it.
The loss of Rush Limbaugh to KEIB didn’t seem to have a negative overall effect; in fact, the station was up from February’s 2.2, the month KFI gave up Limbaugh completely. KEIB, though, essentially held steady at 0.5, down from February’s 0.6 but above the 0.2 share it had in December, the last month the station ran liberal talk under the KTLK call letters.
KTWV The Wave continues to decline under the new “old school” format it now runs, coming in tied with KBUE, The Sound, and KLOS at 18th and a 2.2 share. That’s a half-point drop from February and almost a full point from the 3.1 share the station had in December.
The highest-rated sports station? KSPN with a 1.0 share. KLAC is exactly half that at 0.5, while KLAA is 0.2. Want to know why AM radio is dead? Look no further than sports (and in my opinion, political) talk radio. KLAC never went below a 2 share playing music (standards or country) and KSPN’s 710 frequency was usually around a 2.5 share back in the days when it was Gene Autry’s “Station of the Stars,” the original KMPC.
Richard Wagoner is a San Pedro freelance writer covering radio in Southern California. Send him email at email@example.com.