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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Atlanta’s Lil Jon returns again for ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ March 3; Walton High School Malcolm Freberg returns to ‘Survivor’

Lil Jon returns to NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice' March 3. CREDIT: NBC

Lil Jon returns to NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice' March 3. CREDIT: NBC

Atlanta rap star Lil Jon will get crunk again with Donald Trump on his sixth “Celebrity Apprentice,” all star edition.

Others returning include actor Stephen Baldwin, country artist Trace Adkins, magician Penn Jillette, musician La Toya Jackson, “Poison” star Bret Michaels and nutty actor Gary Busey.  Plus, notorious Omarosa is back for a third round since she is the only non-celebrity “Apprentice”  who became more or less an actual “celebrity,” loosely speaking.

The “all star” concept can sometimes be interesting (see “Top Chef All Stars” or “Survivor All Stars”), but sometimes a pure dud (”Dancing With the Stars All Stars”).

Lil Jon (biggest hit: “Get Low”) during season four raised $80,000 for the Decatur United Methodist Children’s Home. He made it to the final four but ultimately lost to country star John Rich.  A class act, Lil Jon was competitive but laid back during the show, getting along with …

Continue reading Atlanta’s Lil Jon returns again for ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ March 3; Walton High School Malcolm Freberg returns to ‘Survivor’ »

A talk with Big Tigger, new V-103 afternoon host

Big Tigger is enjoying life in Atlanta so far. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Big Tigger is enjoying life in Atlanta so far. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

I spoke with new V-103 afternoon host Big Tigger last week right before I talked to Ryan Cameron. Here are bits and pieces of what I gleaned:

Real name: Darian Morgan (”People who know me call me Darian. If you call me that and you don’t know me, I get a little peeved. You don’t call Ne-Yo Shaffer!”

Raised in: The Bronx

Age: 40

Hosted: BET’s “Rap City” and “106 & Park”

Previously: Afternoon and morning host at WPGC-FM. “My talents and their vision went separate directions,” he explained.

Opening party: At Reign nightclub January 1, Ne-Yo, Young Jeezy, Nelly and T.I. swung by. “It was awesome,” he said. “I feel like I’m here already. It was the first time I didn’t have a daily job since 1994. I still had a local TV show, a syndicated countdown show and a DJ job or the Washington Wizards.”

GPS is his friend: “I’ve been coming her for years but I don’t know my way around. I have awesome navigational …

Continue reading A talk with Big Tigger, new V-103 afternoon host »

Conan O’Brien taping his TBS show at The Tabernacle April 1-4 before the NCAA Championships

Conan O'Brien will be coming to Atlanta for a week to tape his TBS show. CREDIT: AP

Conan O'Brien will be coming to Atlanta for a week to tape his TBS show. CREDIT: AP

Conan O’Brien occasionally takes trips to other cities for his talk show. This year, he will be in Atlanta to tape four of his TBS shows leading up to the Final Four and championship NCAA tournament games at the Georgia Dome.

He’ll do the shows April 1 to 4  at the Tabernacle right near the Dome.

TV Guide was given the exclusive on the news. (No, I am rarely given exclusives like that. National publications usually get them, even if it has an Atlanta angle.)

This is the first time a late-night talk show has visited Atlanta, Atlanta-based TBS noted. (”The Mo’Nique Show” was taped at Turner Studios for BET in 2010 and 2011.)

“Conan,” which is shot in Los Angeles, has visited O’Brien’s old haunt of New York, as well as Chicago.

The show will have AT&T (whose wireless division is here) as a sponsor.

“Conan” consistently pulls in about 1 million viewers a night, about one-third what Leno and …

Continue reading Conan O’Brien taping his TBS show at The Tabernacle April 1-4 before the NCAA Championships »

How did the Atlanta radio stations rank in ratings in 2012?

v103

Despite all the changes in the Atlanta radio market in 2012, the most-popular stations remained at the top of the heap.

The rest of the picture, though, isn’t as clear, as shown by recently released year-end audience metrics.

R&B/hip-hop station V-103 remained the top radio station in Atlanta last year, a dominance it has sustained for the past decade.

R&B station Kiss 104.1 came in a solid second with its best performance since Arbitron began people meter measurements in 2009. News/talk AM750 and 95.5 FM came in third, followed by R&B station Majic 107.5/97.5 and hip-hop station Hot 107.9.

Closely clustered after that are three pop stations: B98.5, Star 94 and Q100. They now have a fourth player in the hotly contested current hits battle: Power 96.1.

For folks wondering how some of the new stations are doing, four-month-old Power has opened strong, already in a tight race with Star 94 and Q100 from mid-September through early December. In the final pre-holiday four-week …

Continue reading How did the Atlanta radio stations rank in ratings in 2012? »

‘Idol’ pre screening in Atlanta included Bo Bice, Vanessa Olivarez

Vanessa Olivarez (season 2) and Bo Bice (season 4) came by the AMC Sugarloaf Mills pre-screening of 'American Idol," season 12. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Vanessa Olivarez (season 2) and Bo Bice (season 4) came by the AMC Sugarloaf Mills pre-screening of 'American Idol," season 12. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

‘American Idol,” for the first time, decided to do a pre screening of the show a week before its debut and brought out the judges for a satellite Q&A session with Ryan Seacrest out of Los Angeles.

They held screenings in several major ciites, including Chicago, Boston, Dallas and Atlanta, where we landed at Sugarloaf Mills AMC with a few hundred “Idol’ acolytes, plus two former ‘Idol” contestants who live locally: season 2’s Vanessa Olivarez and season 4’s Bo Bice. Oliveraz is currently in two bands: Granville Automatic and country quartet Mama’s Blue Dress. Bice is leaving in two weeks from Conyers to spend a possible year-long stint in the starring role on Broadway for “Pump Boys & Dinettes.”

We saw a 45-minute cut-down version of what will be the debut next week in New York (two hours on Wednesday) and Chicago …

Continue reading ‘Idol’ pre screening in Atlanta included Bo Bice, Vanessa Olivarez »

Ratings update: Leno beats Kimmel in first face-to-face; soft opening for TBS’s ‘Cougar Town’

Jimmy Kimmel moves to 11:35 a.m. on ABC. CREDIT: ABC

Jimmy Kimmel moves to 11:35 a.m. on ABC. CREDIT: ABC

Jimmy Kimmel’s first 11:35 p.m. show on ABC last night opened at a solid 3.1 million viewers but fell short of NBC “Late Night With Jay Leno” by 200,000 viewers. He did beat his childhood late-night hero David Letterman on CBS by 200,000 viewers.

As noted in this Wall Street Journal story, one night hardly tells the story. This will be a long-term battle. Kimmel is two decades younger than Leno and Letterman and has been growing audience while the two elders have been gradually shedding viewers.

Kimmel’s show was moved back 25 minutes, as he swapped spots with “Nightline,’ which now airs at 12:35 a.m.

He also now competes fully or partly with Stephen Colbert on Comedy Central at 11:30 p.m. (1.54 million Tuesday night), Chelsea Handler on E! at 11 p.m. and Conan O’Brien on TBS at 11 p.m. (1.01 millon Tuesday)
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TBS’s opening of “Cougar Town” last night fell a little flat: 2.2 million viewers, less than the openings …

Continue reading Ratings update: Leno beats Kimmel in first face-to-face; soft opening for TBS’s ‘Cougar Town’ »

Kicks 101.5 lets go program director Mark Richards

kicks logoMark Richards, one of the longest-running program directors in town, is out at country station Kicks 101.5.

He survived two regime changes. He joined the station early 2003 when ABC owned Kicks, survived the switch to Citadel in 2007, then lasted another 16 months under the latest Cumulus ownership change. While the station has been the dominant country station in Atlanta for much of the past decade, 94.9/The Bull has given Kicks a serious kick in the rear the past six years. For a brief time, the Bull even pulled ahead of Kicks. But for the most part, Kicks had kept an edge among older listeners while the Bull does better among younger country music fans.

That makes sense, since Kicks is the longer-established player and plays more 1990s music.

Based on Arbitron calculations I just did today, Kicks averaged a 3.7 share while the Bull averaged 3.3 in 2012, excluding the final three weeks of the year. Among 25 to 54 year olds, Kicks averaged 3.9, ahead of the Bull at 3.5. Among …

Continue reading Kicks 101.5 lets go program director Mark Richards »

Q100’s Bert Weiss says he has been a ‘binge drinker,’ but not an alcoholic

Bert Weiss made a confession last month about a drinking problem. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/ajc.com

Bert Weiss made a confession last month about a drinking problem. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/ajc.com

Q100 host Bert Weiss told listeners this morning that he has been a binge drinker but feels he is not an alcoholic.

“I’m not the guy who craves alcohol every day or even every two weeks,” he said. “My problem and my concern is when I do go out, if I’m with a whole bunch of friends, it’s difficult for me to put the brakes on. That means I’ll be hung over the next day. I’ll do stupid things and I’ll spend a large amount of time the next day texting apologies.”

Weiss dubbed himself a “binge drinker,” saying he’s been following this pattern going back to college. But now he’s in his mid-40s and feels it’s time to grow up.

Last month, he first told listeners about the issue and 11 Alive talked to him about it. “I’ve got two kids now, I’ve got a 10 year old and a 5 year old, who I’m just getting more present to — I just want to be a role model to them when they’re not around,” Weiss told …

Continue reading Q100’s Bert Weiss says he has been a ‘binge drinker,’ but not an alcoholic »

Video: talking ‘Cougar Town,’ Kris Allen, ‘All My Babies’ Mamas’

CineStars’ Brittany Umar and I discuss “Cougar Town” as it premieres on TBS, Kris Allen’s upcoming show and controversy over “All My Babies’ Mamas.”

Join my Facebook fan page and Twitter. Oh, and Google +, too!

Continue reading Video: talking ‘Cougar Town,’ Kris Allen, ‘All My Babies’ Mamas’ »

Interview with Kris Allen, season 8 ‘Idol’ winner coming to Eddie’s Attic Jan. 20

Kris Allen shows off his cast (in a mirror). CREDIT: Kris Allen's Instagram

Kris Allen shows off his cast (in a mirror). CREDIT: Kris Allen's Instagram

Season 8 “idol” winner Kris Allen broke his right wrist in a New Year’s Day head-on auto collision that wasn’t his fault. Fortunately, the wrist will heal,within a couple of months, he said, and he’ll be able to get back to playing guitar.

Also good news: his pregnant wife and high school sweetheart Katy made it out okay and the baby in her belly, due in July, is fine. Plus, his tour is alive and well. He will stop at Eddie’s Attic in Decatur January 20 for two shows. Details here. Tix are $15 in advance, $18 at the door.

“It definitely hurts,” he said in an interview Monday. “But the show must go on.”

He briefly described the accident:

“My wife and I were driving home. We were getting into a turning lane and this lady came out of nowhere and hit us head on. We were going about 25 miles an hour.”

His Ford Escape absorbed the shock.. He passed out, but his wife got him back awake.  He realized …

Continue reading Interview with Kris Allen, season 8 ‘Idol’ winner coming to Eddie’s Attic Jan. 20 »