Production News - January 2013

TECHNOLOGY

► News from iZotope Inc. includes licensing of a suite of audio repair and restoration tools for the debut of Sound Forge™ Pro Mac, Sony’s Professional Digital Audio Editor. Built on a clean slate for OS X, Sound Forge Pro Mac provides a contemporary application environment that’s perfect for recording, editing, processing, and rendering broadcast-quality audio master files. Sound Forge Pro Mac includes three algorithms to solve common audio problems: iZotope’s DeClicker, DeNoiser, and DeClipper. Sound Forge Pro Mac software, including audio repair algorithms and mastering effects powered by iZotope, is now available worldwide through software stores and online retailers for an MSRP of $299.95 USD. More information on the Sound Forge family of products and the entire line of Sony Creative Software applications can be found at www.sonycreativesoftware.com. Also from iZotope, the company has partnered with Blue Microphones to develop Tiki, the world’s first USB microphone that mimics the intelligence of human hearing. Tiki’s Intelligent Speech Mode distinguishes itself with its ability to focus on desired sounds, minimize background noise, and intelligently detect when to mute altogether. Complemented by a Natural Recording Mode for high-fidelity audio recording, Tiki’s two modes give any Skype user, podcaster or musician the versatility to quickly choose the best option in any situation. For Tiki’s Intelligent Speech Mode, iZotope adapted their award-winning Adaptive Noise Reduction (ANR) and Keyboard Click Reduction (KCR) technologies onto a low-cost Blackfin® DSP chip, manufactured by Analog Devices. iZotope’s ANR is based on the simple premise that speech and music are highly variant over a short period of time, while background noise is persistent and changes slowly. Using a sophisticated spectral processing technique, ANR can quickly identify and surgically subtract the “noiseprint” from the incoming audio signal without degrading the quality of the desired speech or music. iZotope’s KCR, however, is based on the inverse – keyboard click sounds are extremely short and transitory. As a form of noise, they tend to span the entire frequency spectrum. While ANR performs its sonic surgery over a long period of time, KCR operates only in short slices of time, ensuring that the speech or music you want to hear won’t be interrupted. The Blue Tiki is now available in the US for $59 USD. www.bluemic.com/tiki/. ►

THE MIX

► Texas-based Tejas Broadcasting’s 15 stations in Corpus Christi and Amarillo, TX, and Houma and New Orleans, LA are the latest of 34 new stations added to the list of broadcasters who are using vCreative PPO to manage their continuity and production workflow. Minnesota’s Q Media Group and Louisiana’s Delta Media Corp. are also each implementing PPO company-wide, while Townsquare Media adds a 5th market (Missoula, MT) to its PPO stations, and Great Eastern Radio expands their usage to include all of their stations. Tejas Broadcasting’s Corpus Christi Market Manager, Tim Harper, had this to say about the addition of PPO to the production process, “Were excited about adding vCreative PPO to our company. We strive to be on the cutting edge of technology and efficiency in every department, and PPO appears to be the perfect match for both of those goals.” vCreative is headquartered in Babson Park, FL and provides cloud-based software solutions for the media industry. vCreative PPO is a web-based system that provides a more efficient and accurate workflow for creative production and continuity, increasing both efficiency and quality. Currently, over 1,800 radio stations use the vCreative PPO system. www.vcreativeinc.com.

mrc-fm-300x133► A new website is providing music lovers with a whole new internet radio experience. mrc.fm, the brainchild of station director Mike Russell, plays nothing but remixes of current popular tracks round the clock. Any listener tuning in will be greeted by non-stop streaming of the radio station’s creative takes on pop music, all of which were meticulously chosen by expert producers from jingle company Music Radio Creative. The flexible playlists are updated regularly with new songs and beats to provide their audience with a listening experience that no other radio station on the internet can match. Tracks are selected from Top 40 charts, Google, YouTube and other music sources on the internet, while the web stream is constantly monitored for listener input and feedback to provide an ever improving and enjoyable listening experience. All of the jingles that are played on air are specially designed to blend seamlessly with the music. Since there are no regular radio shows (the presenters are the voice overs, singers and team members at Music Radio Creative), listeners can be assured of a one-of-a-kind listening experience whenever they tune in. mrc.fm came into being in the span of just two weeks. The project was an initiative of Mike Russell, also the creative director at Music Radio Creative, who grew up listening to remixes on the radio yet never having the means to dig up more information about the beats he loved. Now, with just a click of the mouse, anyone can view information about a song that’s playing and even buy tracks online instantly. Also, all of mrc.fm’s recently playlisted tracks (along with song descriptions and remix information) can be found on their website. mrc.fm, known as the internet’s first 24/7 radio station from a radio jingle production company, is a concrete example of the ease with which anyone can create their own radio station if they set their mind to it. Mike is currently writing an e-book on how he managed to turn his radio station concept into a reality in just 2 weeks. Mike Russell said of the project, “I always wanted to create a radio station that I thought sounded great and never had the chance to do it until now. Working as a radio producer in terrestrial radio for over 15 years there were always rules and restrictions on what I could and couldn’t do with the imaging. With this project I finally have the chance to live my dream!” Aside from being a radio station that is devoted to providing amazing remixes, mrc.fm is also a valuable resource hub for audio producers, radio station management, DJs and podcasters. It showcases the power of how the right kind of audio production, branding and radio imaging from Music Radio Creative can make any project sound awesome. Music Radio Creative has a pool of professional audio designers, voice talents, singers and musicians who provide custom made voice-overs, jingles and audio branding, from simple DJ drops to full-blown radio imaging. www.musicradiocreative.com.

Joe Cip 2Benztown announced that Joe Cipriano will add his talents to the Benztown voiceover offering, making this distinctive and versatile voice talent available to its radio station partners for customized, high quality local radio imaging. Cipriano is probably best known as the voice of FOX-TV Network. He is also one of the signature voices at CBS, where his voice is closely associated with some of CBS Television’s brightest comedies, including “Two and a Half Men”, “Mike and Molly” and others. For more information, you can see Joe Cipriano’s interview on the Benztown Voice-Over Blog (wp.me/p2spGi-8H) or visit the Benztown website at www.benztown.com. Also from Benztown, their Radio Networks division announced that it is bringing Spotted Dog Promotion’s turnkey shared promotions to radio stations in markets of every size. Spotted Dog promotions offer over $1 million a year in prizes, with local prize packages that can bring in new sponsorships and sales opportunities for radio stations. Spotted Dog’s online, social and digital features, including custom microsites, will drive web traffic, enhance radio stations’ digital presence and provide new opportunities for generating new revenue. In addition, Spotted Dog can conduct listener surveys to identify listener needs and wants and determine desired programming and future contest ideas. Tracy Johnson, CEO, Spotted Dog Promotions, said: “Spotted Dog is like your personal, never-ending prize closet with an unlimited budget! From the Lottery promotion and Daily Bonus drawing, to the Weekly Drawing and Monthly Sweepstakes with four categories of fantasy prizes, local radio station listeners have exciting chances to win, and stations have more ways to engage them than ever. The best part is: It’s completely customizable and turnkey, so stations can do what they do best—promote it!” www.benztown.com/programming/spotteddog.

► The first-ever College Broadcasters, Inc. (CBI) National Student Electronic Media Convention (NSEMC), received rave reviews from its attendees, with 95% of attendees saying they would recommend it to others. Held at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel October 25-27, 2012, the NSEMC is America’s only convention dedicated exclusively to the interests of student TV/video outlets, radio stations, and webcasters. The convention featured 80 sessions covering a variety of aspects of radio, video, and new media applications, a keynote address by CNN anchor Carol Costello, and the presentation of the National Student Production Awards. It was completely sold out, with 300 registered attendees. Among other convention highlights were tours of local media facilities and the unveiling of the College Broadcasters, Inc. Joel Willer Award, named for the recently retired Director of University Broadcasting at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, to be awarded annually for “exceptional dedication and service to student electronic media.” Additional information on the National Student Electronic Media Convention can be found at atlanta.askcbi.org. An announcement of the dates and location of the 2013 NSEMC will be made in the coming weeks. College Broadcasters Inc. represents students involved in radio, television, webcasting and other related media ventures; ensures a commitment to education and the student pursuit of excellence through active involvement in electronic media; promotes cooperative efforts between the association and other national, regional, and state media organizations; facilitates the discussion of issues related to student-operated electronic media; and other community oriented programs. CBI currently represents over 200 active radio and television member stations.

► The Federal Communications Commission recently announced that for the first time in more than a decade, community groups nationwide will soon be able to start small, local radio stations. Nonprofit organizations, schools, Indian Tribes and public safety agencies can apply for Low Power FM (LPFM) stations in October 2013. For the first time ever, the agency will allow these noncommercial stations in urban areas. The news is long-awaited by the Prometheus Radio Project and its supporters, who led the grassroots coalition that pushed Congress to pass the Local Community Radio Act of 2010. The law expanded community radio by directing the FCC to make more channels available nationwide, reversing an earlier law that relegated stations to rural settings. The FCC implemented the law by creating more flexible rules on where new stations can be located. “Finally, communities without a voice on the airwaves will have a chance to control their own local media,” said Brandy Doyle, Policy Director for the Prometheus Radio Project. “Thanks to the significant step forward today, we will see a wave of new radio stations that better reflects the diversity of our country.” The 800+ low power stations already on the air are run by nonprofit groups, colleges, churches, and emergency responders. Many, such as the Oregon farmworker station KCPN, offer local programming in languages other than English, often hard to find on the radio dial. KPCN, also known as Radio Movimiento, plays Spanish-language news and information, organizes voter registration drives, and plays traditional and contemporary music. Low power stations are an accessible outlet for nonprofit organizations to engage their communities, costing as little as $10,000 to launch. Those who want to apply for a station should start preparing now. Sign up for free updates and support from Prometheus, including access to application guides, free online trainings, and advice on getting started. Find out if there is an open frequency on your radio dial with the Prometheus zip code check tool. Join the online community at Radio Spark to connect with radio engineers and other applicants nationwide, or meet face-to-face at a public event on the Reclaim the Airwaves tour. www.prometheusradio.org.

Rise-Up-Against-Hunger-28397.7/107.3 WAAF hosted a fundraising event called “WAAF’s Rise Up Against Hunger” that started Tuesday, December 4 and ended Thursday, December 6, where on-air personalities LB and Spaz were ‘Risen Up’ on boom cranes and were living on a platform suspended high in the sky for three full days in an effort to raise funds for The Greater Boston, Worcester County and New Hampshire Food Banks. The guys came down at 7 p.m. December 6th. They had blankets and minimal supplies to brave the elements, and that’s it! After three days, the campaign in total raised $76,342 to benefit the local food banks. ▲

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