Robservations on the media beat:
At a time when news organizations everywhere are dealing with drastic cutbacks, Daily Herald Media Group is about to introduce two new weekly publications. Starting June 18, the employee-owned company will launch the Glenview Herald and the Northbrook Herald, serving the two north suburban communities just east of the Daily Herald circulation area. The two new tabloid-size publications will be delivered free to residents. The move fills a void created in March by the demise of 22nd Century Media, which published the Glenview Lantern and the Northbrook Tower among its 14 community newspapers. Northbrook resident Gail Eisenberg, former director of sales for 22nd Century Media’s Glenview and Northbrook papers, has been hired to handle retail advertising sales for the Glenview Herald and the Northbrook Herald. Editorial content will be provided by three current Daily Herald staffers, with Melynda Findlay-Shamie serving as editor, and Joe Lewnard and David Oberhelman serving as reporter/photographers. “While newspapers here and across the country deal with the challenges of the coronavirus on business conditions, it is especially important to innovate,” Doug Ray, board chairman and CEO of Daily Herald Media Group, said in an announcement to staff Thursday. “Growth and development of new initiatives are key to our future, and creation of these newspapers is just one example.” (Disclosure: I am employed by Daily Herald Media Group.)
Justin Kaufman has been tapped as first interim host of the midday talk show “Reset” on Chicago Public Media WBEZ 91.5-FM. Starting June 15, he’ll begin filling in while the station seeks a permanent replacement for Jenn White, who’s leaving to become host of NPR’s “1A.” (Here is the job posting.) Kaufmann, who spent 21 years as a producer at WBEZ, recently wrapped up a five-year run as evening host at Nexstar Media Group news/talk WGN 720-AM. He renewed ties with WBEZ as host of a limited-run weekend call-in show. “‘Reset is the flagship show for one of the best radio stations in the country,” Kaufmann said. “I’m humbled and grateful for the opportunity to step in as an interim host. I’m looking forward to rolling up my sleeves to do my part to serve WBEZ listeners and the city of Chicago during this unique and challenging moment.” “Reset” airs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Barry Cronin, the former Sun-Times sportswriter and editor of Chicago District Golfer magazine, debuts this weekend as co-host of “Scorecard,” the weekly golf show on Entercom sports/talk WSCR 670-AM. He’ll be joined by co-host Mike Esposito from 6 to 8 a.m. Saturdays, succeeding the duo of Ed Sherman and Steve Olken, who stepped down after 10 years. The show was slated to return to The Score in April, but was delayed by the pandemic shutdown. “Mike and I can’t wait — finally — to get the opportunity to talk golf with the millions of passionate golfers who live in the Chicago area and beyond,” Cronin said. “The PGA Tour is back next week, local golf courses are opening up, and we’re excited to be able to connect with our listeners.”
“Do You Hear Me? A Discussion of Race,” a one-hour special on race relations hosted by Val Warner and Ryan Chiaverini of “Windy City Live,” will air at 1 p.m. today on ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7. The special edition of the locally produced talk show is the first in what’s billed as an ongoing series on the issue. Guests will include Father Michael Pfleger, activist Jahmal Cole, small business owners and young adults. “‘Windy City Live’ continues to be a platform where people can speak, share ideas and offer solutions,” said John Idler, president and general manager of ABC 7. “We always want our viewers to know we are listening.”
Thursday’s comment of the day: Dave Connell: Steve Cushing and “Blues Before Sunrise” is by far the best blues show on radio from the time it started. And thanks to WDCB for having the archive where I can listen to “Blues Before Sunrise” anytime of day for almost two weeks after the show runs. (I could not stay up that late). I remember being turned on to the show around 1984 imagining this 70-year-old dude spinning these wonderful tunes down in some dingy basement with one light on and this enormous record collection. When I saw him later that year hosting a video show at the Jazz Record Mart, I was so glad to see this guy is young and will be around for a while. What an amazing talent and truly a Chicago institution. We are very lucky to have him. Congratulations. You are the best at what you do.