News/talk/sports station WBAL -AM (1090) moved past country-music outlet WPOC-FM (93.1) for the first time in a year, while local listeners also seemed to develop a stronger taste for oldies rock music, according to the summer radio ratings results.
The Arbitron numbers for the period June through September, ** among all listeners 12 and older, reversed the WBAL-WPOC standings that had prevailed since the 1994 summer quarter, when the major-league baseball strike wiped out WBAL's traditional summer drawing card.
Oldies rock station WQSR-FM also made inroads in the summer book, taking up third place in the 12-plus demographic.
Jeff Beauchamp, vice president and station manager of WBAL, attributed the first-place ranking to a strong overall station performance, especially by the station's morning drive-time show with host Dave Durian. He said it was "absolutely not" due primarily to the return of baseball and the attention surrounding Cal Ripkin's record-breaking streak.
"Baseball obviously is a factor, but it's just not the most important factor," he said. Mr. Beauchamp noted the WBAL morning drive show's leading 11.7 share among 12-plus listeners (a share represents about 3,600 people in an average quarter hour) was an exceptionally strong lead over the 8.1 share of second-place tie WPOC and WQSR.
AT WPOC, however, station manager Bob Moody attributed the WBAL ranking to baseball, saying, "All you have to do is look at the 7 [p.m.] to midnight numbers." In the evenings, WBAL had a strong 13.5 share, compared to WPOC's 5.9 share/fourth-place ranking.
"It was a pretty good book for us. We're not surprised, we're not disgusted," said Mr. Moody.
At WQSR, general manager Brad Murray said the summer ratings were the best ever for the Good Time Oldies format, adding: "There's certainly a fondness for the music in this community."
But he said the station's longevity with the same format, dating back to the early 1980s, the stability of its personalities and its community involvement all contributed to the increase in listeners.
WQSR's "Rouse and Company" morning drive-time show continued to rank No. 1 in the most targeted 25-54 age group.
A mouse's life
Happy birthday, Annette!
The dark-eyed beauty who stirred many an adolescent fancy on the original "Mickey Mouse Club" series, Annette Funicello, is 53 years old today. CBS celebrates tonight with a TV movie based on her autobiography, "A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes: The Annette Funicello Story" (at 9 p.m., on WJZ, Channel 13).
Annette herself will introduce and narrate the drama, but actresses Elysa Hogg, Andrea Nemeth and Eva LaRue portray the performer at various ages. She was just 12, a would-be ballerina, when Walt Disney discovered her in Burbank, Calif., and made her one of the first Mouseketeers of his TV fun club creation, which made its debut on Oct. 3, 1955.
At the end of the film, the network plans to air a public-service announcement for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, for which Annette is a national spokeswoman. She revealed several years ago that she suffers from the disease.
Rodricks on TV menu
Dan Rodricks, who ended his Saturday morning radio show on WBAL a few weeks ago, is taking up a new post in pretty much the same weekend spot -- but on television.
"Rodricks for Breakfast" is scheduled to premiere Nov. 4, and will
air from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on WMAR, Channel 2.
MTV is taking applications for participants in the fifth installment of "The Real World," the series in which groups of young adults are thrown together to live in front of the cameras.
The seven people selected will operate a small business in Miami.
Applicants must be age 18-26 and have a taste for entrepreneurship or a business background. Deadline is Nov. 15. For more information, call 'The Real World' hot line, (818) 505-7795.
An editor's life
Rarely has a newspaper editor been as ubiquitous in the broadcast media as Ben Bradlee, the former chief at the Washington Post who has been promoting his autobiographical book, "A Good Life: Newspapering and Other Adventures."
He is scheduled Wednesday as the first-hour guest on "The Marc Steiner Show," at noon on WJHU-FM (88.1).
In numerous TV and radio appearances to date, Mr. Bradlee has not divulged the identity of "Deep Throat," the legendary confidential source for reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who helped reveal the Watergate scandal that brought down President Richard M. Nixon.
Here are the Arbitron rankings and audience share for listeners 12 and older for Baltimore's top 10 radio stations.
Station .. .. ..Spring .. .. ..Summer
1 WBAL-AM .. .. ..8.4 .. .. .. ...8.7
2 WPOC-FM .. .. ..8.5 .. .. .. ...8.2
3 WQSR-FM .. .. ..5.3 .. .. .. ...6.5
4 WLIF-FM .. .. ..6.8 .. .. .. ...6.1
5 WWMX-FM .. .. ..5.6 .. .. .. ...5.3
6 WIYY-FM .. .. ..3.9 .. .. .. ...4.9
7 WERQ-FM .. .. ..5.1 .. .. .. ...4.8
8 WXYV-FM .. .. ..4.9 .. .. .. ...4.8
9 WHFS-FM .. .. ..4.9 .. .. .. ...4.3
10 WWIN-FM .. .. .3.7 .. .. .. ...3.7