Dodgers Change Tune on Spanish Radio

Media by Claudia Peschiutta

Showing the growing influence of the Spanish-language radio market, KWKW-AM (1330) has established a direct relationship with the Dodgers.

Although the station has broadcast Dodger games since 1986 (and from 1958-71) it only recently got its own contract with the club a move both sides say will make the team's Spanish-language radio broadcasts more lucrative than ever.

The five-year agreement updates an earlier arrangement in which the station was a subcontractor of English-language broadcaster KXTA-AM (1150), which packaged much of the ad time for the Spanish-language broadcasts with its own inventory.

"Spanish used to be considered a small, ethnic add-on," said Jim Kalmenson, president of KWKW, a Spanish-language news and talk station.

But strong ratings and a large Hispanic market have made the Spanish-language broadcasts more valuable to the team and its broadcasters. In fact, Spanish rights became a deciding factor in the team's radio broadcast negotiations last year.

Clear Channel Communications Inc., owner of Dodger broadcaster KXTA, dropped out of the talks because the team would not give up the Spanish-language rights. Viacom Inc.-owned KFWB-AM (980) will pick up the English-language broadcasts in 2003.

"The Hispanic market is growing so much," said Dodgers spokesman Derrick Hall. "It did not make sense to continue having (the Spanish radio rights) packaged in with English."

The deal with KWKW allows the station to sell the ad time just before and after the games. The Dodgers get to sell the ad time during the game.

Making More Music

Univision Communications Inc. is trying to make a name for itself beyond the world of television.

The L.A.-based owner of the top Spanish-language TV network wants to expand its presence in the Latin music market with the launch of a new label, Rudy Perez Enterprises. Univision, which also owns a namesake music label, recently completed its acquisition of Fonovisa Records and has a 50-percent stake in Mexico-based Disa Records.

The newest label is a joint venture with music composer and producer Rudy Perez, who has worked with Christina Aguilera, Marc Anthony, Julio Iglesias and Luis Miguel. Rudy Perez Enterprises will focus on signing artists from the Miami music scene.

Unleashed in L.A.

Ron Samuel describes Unleashed as an urban men's magazine. Think Details or Maxim with a hip-hop edge.

"We use women of color as our eye candy," said Samuel, publisher and editor-in-chief of the L.A.-based magazine that was recently launched after a year and a half of development. The first issue features "Clueless" star Stacey Dash on the cover. "There's a void in the marketplace," Samuel said. "My demographic is the urban male. We're super consumers and advertisers know that."

Kool Cigarettes, Durex condoms, Pirate Rum and Range Rover are among the advertisers in the first issue of Unleashed, which targets men ages 25 to 40.

Samuel and two partners put up $600,000 to launch the magazine. The publication has a full-time staff of six and uses freelancers. "I'm going for broke," Samuel said.

Changes at KCRW

The program schedule at KCRW-FM (89.9) changes again this week as the station reshuffles the line-up to make two of its shows, "The Treatment" and "Left, Right and Center," available for national distribution.

"The Treatment," a 30-minute show about films, moves to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday. "Left, Right and Center," a half-hour political talk show hosted by David Frum, Arianna Huffington, Matthew Miller and Robert Scheer, changes to 2:30 p.m. on Friday. "The Politics of Culture" goes to 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Warren Olney's "Which Way L.A.?," which airs weekdays at 7 p.m., will be replaced Friday evenings with a repeat broadcast of "Left, Right and Center."

The changes come less than a month after KCRW last changed its schedule. In June, the station introduced and quickly dropped "The Tavis Smiley Show" from 4 to 5 a.m. on weekdays after listeners complained about the interruption in the broadcast of National Public Radio's "Morning Edition."

New Ms. Editor

Tracy Wood, a veteran of the Los Angeles Times and Orange County Register, is the new editor-in-chief of Ms. magazine.

Wood replaces Marcia Ann Gillespie, who left Ms. after its new owners moved the feminist publication to L.A. from New York.

The Feminist Majority Foundation research and action group took over Ms. in January and moved its operations into a Beverly Hills office last month. Formerly a bi-monthly magazine, Ms. is being published as a quarterly.



Staff reporter Claudia Peschiutta can be reached at (323) 549-5225 ext. 229, or at cpeschiutta@labusinessjournal.com.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.