Sirius Debuts new Radiohead Album: In Rainbows
Radiohead recently shocked the world with news of the purely online release of their brand new album, In Rainbows. The band has shocked record companies as well as fans by giving consumers the option of paying what they want for a digital download of the CD. Also, their is a box set version which includes a vinyl version of the album for about eighty dollars USD. Sirius radio station "left of center" will be playing every new song from the album all week long.
"In Rainbows" has received mostly positive reviews. Fans have described the album as somewhere in between previous records "OK Computer" and "Kid A". The album seems to have a lot of the electronic sounds that Radiohead is famous for, as well as great guitar parts and melodies reminiscent of their more pop-focused efforts.
The Best thing about "In Rainbows" is its return to the Radiohead five man show we all know and love. It seems front man Thom Yorke has gotten most of his experimental music out of his system with his previous release of a solo/electronic themed album "Eraser". The whole album seems to have a great broad appeal, and reminiscent of Thom Yorke's biggest influence: Jeff Buckley. It almost seems as if the band is trying to not reinvent the wheel this time, which in Radioheads case, is a good thing, but surely if they decide to in the future, everyone will be o.k with it.
Be sure to Tune into Left of Center to here it for yourself, you won't be disappointed.Starmate 5Stratus 5
Motorola reveals FM Capable Cell Phones
With the electronics market changing and becoming increasingly competitive, Motorola hopes to dip into the buyers market established by this years "super phone/mp3 player/camera/palm pilot/laser cannon" phenomenons like apples "i-phone" and the Microsoft's "Zune" by introducing the "W-series", A line of sleek new phones with the ability to feature internal FM radio capability.
In light of the recent popularity of satellite radio
, the move to FM seems like a risky venture for Motorola, but it does hold some advantages over satellite radio, such as the ability to receive radio signal indoors, which for some consumers who commute on public transportation, work indoors, or live in a large urban area, would be a huge selling point against satellite radio, especially the portable versions. It will be interesting to see how these FM radio phones will pan out and if Sirius or XM will be able to provide a similar type of integration to jump the hurdle that the lack of reception indoors creates. In the long run, Satellite radio still holds the deck of cards so to speak in advantages over FM (Variety of Selection, Editing, Lack of Commercials etc.), but the ability to reach EVERBODY, easily could sway some consumers to come back to their long lost friend FM.
These trends should be interesting to watch in the upcoming months as the W-Series makes its debut. Also any consumer interested in industry trends can't help but wonder, what will they come up with next? In other words: only time will tell.
Howard Stern: Still the King of Media
It has been almost 22 months since Howard Stern made the leap into orbit, but even now, he still carries a huge influence on what is happening in terrestrial radio. When Stern made the decision to move to satellite, the impact was far more reaching than just a new studio. There was a virtual vacuum left in his wake as radio companies scrambled to find new programming, and reinvented their formats in an effort to become more relevant to consumers. Sterns’ move actually became an opportunity for the “little guys” to make an inroads and win over new listeners.
When King Of All Media made his decision to move to satellite radio, there were hundreds of radio stations that saw an opportunity to make their own mark. Being number 1 was back up for grabs on terrestrial, and a shift in the ratings book balance was about to happen. It would take time to pan out, but in the minds of many radio operations, there was once again a chance. Sterns move actually invited a new vigor amongst many stations that simply had become complacent.
It was announced yesterday that New York City has a new number one terrestrial radio station. For the first time in over 20 years, Z100 FM became the number one station in New York. While the press release did not mention it, the feat would not have been possible if Howard Stern was still on the air at K-ROCK. Stern dominated the airwaves for a period of decades. His number one position was so entrenched, that other radio stations simply tried their best at becoming number two, and second place became the ultimate goal that any other station could hope for. When Stern left, the race was on.
In many ways, Stern is actually responsible for terrestrial radio stations thinking outside the box. He is responsible for radio companies taking risks again with new formats, new talent, and a new vigor. Some terrestrial radio stations even cut a deal with XM Satellite Radio (one of the terrestrial radio “enemies”), to bring Opie and Anthony, who themselves had made the move to satellite, back onto terrestrial airwaves in nineteen markets. The Opie and Anthony Show have posted what can only be termed as mixed results. The XM shock jock duo are available in the New York Market, but have been unable to reach the type of ratings that Stern delivered as exampled by the top New York spot going to Z100.
When Stern moved to satellite, there were those that stated that he would make himself irrelevant. That assessment could not be further from the truth. Millions have come to Sirius since he arrived, and not a quarter has passed since that arrival that Sirius has not garnered a retail advantage over their competitor XM. That is only half of the equation though. Sterns relevance also has been demonstrated in the terrestrial radio world he left behind. What has also been demonstrated over the past 22 months is that terrestrial radio is indeed competing with satellite radio
. There has never been a period of time where the number of format changes, host changes, and jockeying for position has been so prevalent. These stations clearly demonstrated that they were indeed eager to get the attention of the audio entertainment consumer.
Whatever your opinion of Stern, there are simply some things that can not be debated. He carries influence and relevance in whatever he does. Perhaps that is why he is called THE KING OF ALL MEDIA.
Sirius and XM any closer to merger?
Sirius & XM Any Closer?
CNBC just had some back to back coverage regarding Sirius Satellite Radio and possibly of XM Satellite Radio. We've been closely monitoring this merger and it just seems that at least the chances of a "biast toward approval" have increased at least a bit.
David Faber got to interview Sirius' CEO Mel Karmazin. Karmazin noted to Faber that both Sirius and XM have each sent in 6 million pages of documents to the regulatory agencies and have communicated with the FCC. Karmazin said he thinks the chances should be 100% that the deal closes in his opinion, but he wouldn't give any formal percentage chances that the merger would really pass regulatory scrutiny. The backup plan is sort of a business as usual if the deal does get blocked. The truth is there wasn't really anything new in the interview.
Shortly after the David Faber interview, Jim Cramer came on CNBC (with a slur from root canals) discussing this and said he thinks the companies will get the deal done and that could get it to a $5.00 stock.
We'll know fairly soon if this will occur or not by the end of the year. We have covered this ourselves with recent notes about the chances getting higher that the deal could close. One thing is for sure though: If the DOJ blocks this merger, XM and Sirius are both likely to announce substantially higher monthly prices to remain viable. We recently noted how it sure sounded like the XM group was preparing to operate as its its own entity.
We have reviewed this merger on and off, but have not yet made any formal calls for our Special Situation Investing Newsletter subscribers. It is our opinion that the deal SHOULD be approved based upon other approvals, but ultimately this is at the mercy of too few key people that are deemed as being heavily under the influence of terrestrial radio lobbying to be able to make the "SHOULD" status become a "WILL" status. The government has rubber-stamped just about every single "inside the US merger" and the influence from the radio industry is what has been holding this up; and the DOJ recently requested more data. We have been reviewing Sirius and XM for the subscriber newsletter but have yet to make a determination we'd be willing to sign our name to. An analyst opinion is one thing, and a decision from the government is another.
Shares were up 1% at $3.58 before the call, but Sirius shares are now up 2% at $3.62 on over 33 million shares today after the two segments.
Article Courtesty of Jon C. Ogg
October 15, 2007
This is all good and valuable information, but what it really boils down to is how this merger will effect the consumer market, as well as the thousands of people who have electronics from either Sirius or XM. Will the equipment change? How will issues of compatibility of parts and price be effected?
Sirius reveals the Stiletto 2!!
Sirius has taken the wraps off of the new Sirius Stiletto 2
, Here is the breakdown of the features and highlights:
* Store 100 hours of content
* The Stiletto 2 is smaller (1.9" x 4.3" x 0.6") and lighter (4.3 oz)
* Enhanced 802.11 b/g WiFi now supports commercial hotspots (username/password options now available)
* MicroSD slot for expandable MP3 storage
* Support for any Windows Media-based music store
* Sirius Replay, which allows users to pause, rewind and replay 60 minutes of live radio programming
* Radio Replays - stored music broadcasts from your favorite music channels that create "virtual channels" - these are available even when you have no WiFi or Sirius signal (awesome)
* Altec Lansing will supply new antenna headphones (model # AHP202SIR) for the Stiletto 2. Featuring 30mm drivers and an adjustable headband for increased comfort.
* Battery life: 4 hours live satellite, 10 hours WiFi, 20 hours of pre-recorded content
* MSRP: $349.99 (vehicle kit: $49.99; executive system: $149.99)
* The Sirius Stiletto 2 will be available in Fall 2007
There also is a video available online that can be found here
. Sirius is yet to announce the official release date, but they speculate is should be out sometime this upcoming fall.
There are news reports all over the internet that confirm the Sirius and XM will try to merge and that Mel Karmazin would run the company. This comes after this past Friday XM stock rose on the news that a merger could pass regulatory hurdles.
Keep checking back with GSI for more information. Also track the story at Orbitcast
Read more information Here
While the vast majority of Super Bowl fans turned to TV to watch the game, they often turn to radio for pre- and post- game coverage. According to a custom sports study released Wednesday from Arbitron, 35 percent of Indianapolis Adults 18 and older, and 24 percent of Chicago Adults, listened to pre-game or post-game coverage of the Super Bowl on the radio.
“Chicago has a reputation for being a sports-savvy town, but for this one event, Indianapolis fans showed more fervor than the big city residents,” said Mason Meyer, manager of custom sports sales for Arbitron. Arbitron conducted the study the day after the game on Monday, Feb. 5.
Sports Talk radio drew huge audiences for the run-up to Sunday’s game. More than half of the Adults in both home-team cities, 54 percent in Indianapolis and 52 percent in Chicago, said they listened to Sports Talk radio during the week before the game. Of those listeners, 37 percent said they listened more than usual. Post-game radio listening was higher in the winning town, with 22 percent of Indianapolis respondents saying they listened to post-game radio coverage compared to 10 percent in Chicago.
No surprise that the radio audience pales in comparison to the TV audience with 93 percent in Indianapolis and 82 percent in Chicago saying they watched some part of the pre-game, game and post-game coverage on TV.
As expected, out-of-home TV viewing was also high. Thirty percent of Indianapolis adults watched the Super Bowl outside their own home, 92 percent at a friend’s or family member’s home. Only 6 percent of out of home viewing was in a bar or restaurant.
In Chicago, 28 percent of adults said they viewed the game outside their own home with 76 percent going to a friend’s or family’s home for the vent. Only 9 percent of out of home viewing was in a bar or restaurant.
A good percentage of viewers said they paid “very close attention” to the TV commercials, 39 percent in Indianapolis and 37 percent in Chicago.
Sirius gets good ole Blue Eyes!
Sirius announced today that they will be adding a 24/7 channel dedicated to Sinatra and his music. The "Siriusly Sinatra" channel will be replacing the current channel "standard time" on Ch 75. The Channel is said to be produced by the Sinatra Family and the Sinatra Enterprises having his music along with the other swing and big band genre artists.
Sirius and the Sinatra family will create The Chairman's Hour, using spoken word and music from the Sinatra archives, hosted by Frank himself.
The Channel will also feature a weekly show hosted by Frank Sinatra's daughter, Nancy Sinatra, talking about her memories of her father and more. They say that the channel will include live performances and archived material from the Sinatra Family collection.
This announcement comes on the heels of XM dropping it's "Frank's Place" Channel last month.
More Here at FMQB.com
More talk of the "Stern Effect"
Just wanted to share this great article from Crave Magazine written by Johnny Firecloud (think that's his real name?) this week. It is a really great article about Stern and not only his effect on Sirius, but sattelite radio as a whole. It is a GREAT article for Stern and SiriusLONG LIVE THE KING: Howard Stern Still Rules the Airwaves. By Johnny Firecloud
***Plus you can enter to win an autographed copy of Artie Lange's Beer League
on their website
Bubba the Love "Manning"??
Well much like Peyton Manning, our Howard 101 favorite is becoming an advertising juggernaut of sorts... Well at least Bubba is out and about promoting and pushing not just Sirius. Bubba has been seen in many ads in print media for Prosource Performance supplements
, saying that he lost 70lbs with diet, training (with Hogan), and that using one of Prosouces products. Bubba has been seen in a few fitness magazines and is now a spokemans of sort for Prosource, a role which he is sharing with Survivor star Stephanie LaGrossa who is pushing Prosources protein supplements products. Bubba will be spending time this spring doing appearances for Prosource at The Arnold Classic in Columbus, signing copies of his article in Muscle & Fitness magazine due out on news stands in a couple of week.
But to GSI, at least Bubba is out there building not only his name, but Sirius' image as well.
Check out more here
(I really like them calling Bubba a Radio Superstar)!
Sirius Announced that they will have a new comedy channel sometime this spring. Sirius Channel 106 will be FOXXHOLE, a channel for exclusive urban comedy, entertainment and lifestyle Programming. Academy Award winning Actor and American Music award winning singer, Jamie Foxx will be the executive producer for the channel. Foxx won the Best Actor nod from the Academy in 2005 for his portrayal of Ray Charles in the movie "Ray." Also co-executive producer will be Marcus King who has worked with Foxx in the past on may of his entertainment ventures including the short lived "The Jamie Foxx Show."
The Channel will be a 24/7 of programming focused around urban comedy bits, skits, music, and radio theatre. "SIRIUS Satellite Radio gives me the opportunity to create urban entertainment and programming like you have never heard on the radio." says Foxx. Foxx will host a weekly show on the channel as well as daily "segments" in which he will record no matter where he is or what he is doing in the world.
Check out more here at Variety.
InterVIEW specialist and Rosie O'Donnel's Best friend, Barbara Walters will have a weekly show on Sirius Stars Ch 102. The show will be a review of over 30 years of interviews with famous leads, actors, and the like! The premiere broadcast of Barbara Walters' Best of the Very Best will air January 22, 2007 at 6am. The show will re-air during the day and new shows will continue to air weekly on Mondays.
PENNY CRONE let go from Howard 100 News
Howard Stern confirmed on his radio show this morning that one of the Howard 100 reporters was let go due to budgetiary reason. Penny Crone has been with Howard 100 News since she left Fox new in NYC. She made her Stern debut on Howard Sterns first day press confirence last year on January 9th 2006. She was let go 1 year and 7 days later.
Check out more at the NY Daily News
FCC says NOT A CHANCE!
The AP reported today that Sirius and XM stocks plundged yesterday afternoon after the FCC commisioner said that there is no chance that the two satrads will be able to merge. Kenin Martin said that the 2 lincenes that were granted to the companies procluded them in ever joining together. The more and more you hear about the possible merger the more and more Mr Martin comes out with guns blaring that the FCC will not allow it. THE SAGA CONTINUES!
Read More Here
Here is more and more talk about the prospect of the possible Merger between XM and Sirius. No real hard news has come out of either camp, but it seems to be more and more of a possibility as the weeks pass. Here are numerous articles from the past few days about the possible Merger.From Space NewsFrom Blogging Stocksand From The APand from Forbes (today)
Also in the wake of all the Merger Talks a group of Law Students at George Washington University have started an advocacy group to prepare to protect the subscribers or both services. Check it out at FMQB
Keep checking back at GSI to see if anything new happens!
GSI sends out its best wishes to Howard 101's afternoon drive jock got hitched over the weekend to girlfriend Heather Cole. Joining the whole "Sponge" crew at the wedding was Howard Stern and all of the shows regulars. Also there was Hulk Hogan and family, who hopefully where there with their "Hogan Knows Best" Crew (I doubt it!).
Eric Deggans in his St Petersburg Times article
said that the wedding was "Unusually Normal" and that Clem and Cole got married at the First Baptist Church of St Petersburg.
Well I bet the videos on Howard TV are going to be worth the monthly charge. According to Stern this morning, Howard TV filmed "everything."
Check out More on Bubba's Wedding.... Here @ Radio Ink
Spectrum's Dave Mac passes away at the age of 43.
For those of you who are Spectrum fans you probable noticed that mid-day host Dave Mac left the air sometime in early December. Announced on Tuesday that Dave passed away to Brain Cancer over the weekend and the Spectrum has been running a tribute to him all week. Here is his Obituary as posted at Sirius.comLong time SIRIUS host Dave McNamara (Â?Dave MacÂ?) passed away Saturday morning, succumbing to cancer. He was 43 years old. For the better part of his life, Dave was a musician...playing in and producing a number of bands along the same New Jersey shore that gave rise to Bruce Springsteen. Dave Mac was also a lifelong fan and connoisseur of music of all varieties. A great host here at SIRIUS, and before SIRIUS, at various radio stations across the country. Hopefully you were able to hear him on the Spectrum, SIRIUS Disorder, or SIRIUS Blues. He made SIRIUS a better place Â? and if you knew him, you know that his contributions were far greater than merely his on-air work. Dave Mac could evoke laughter, tears, and significant thought...all within the course of one radio show. Dave Mac was a great communicator...and also, perhaps above all else, a great interviewer. If you were lucky enough to hear Dave's conversations with some of the biggest stars in the history of rock music, then you were the beneficiary of some of the most frank and forthright discussions you could ever hope to eavesdrop on. From The Rolling Stones to John Mayer, Neil Young to Coldplay, The Who, B.B. King, Bob Seger, Pete Yorn, Keb Mo, Beth Orton, and so many others, DaveÂ?s engaging nature brought out the absolute best in those he spoke with. He is survived by his parents, Leon A. and Patricia D. McNamara, his fiancÃ©e Rita C. Truex and his brothers, Duncan McNamara of San Carlos, CA, and Malcolm McNamara. In lieu of flowers, donations in DaveÂ?s memory may be directed to the American Cancer Society.Our tribute to Dave will air Saturday at 8am ET and Sunday at 11pm ET.
...on a personal note. I listened to Dave Mac every weekday from noon until I left work at 4 over Sirius Internet Radio. Not only was he one of the best andknowledableedable jocks I had ever heard. I always looked forward to his interviews with artists and just loved to hear his random knowledge of some track his was about to spin. If you get a chance listen to the tribute show... It really does showcase his great on-air abilities! I will say from working in the industry for year. Dave Mac was a DJ's....DJ! I will miss listening to him.
Sirius @ CES
Mel and the boys from Sirius have been busy this week at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Sirius' big annoucement this week was the introduction of the "Sirius Backseat TV." Backseat is going to be a TV service fed via Sirius satellites to you car with programming geared toward children. The service is dues to be available in cars as soon as the spring of this year. The Unit, The SiriusConnect SC-V1 Audio/Video Tuner, (which I assume will just be called the "SiriusConnect") will allows listener in the front set to listen to sirius radio broadcasts as passengers in the back can listen to the audio from whatever program they are watching on the "Backseat TV." No real information was given out other than that, except it is due to be available by Spring of this year.
Check out more information about Sirius at CES and some great product pictures here at ORBITCAST
FMQB reports that the FCC Chairman Kevin Martin would block any attempted merger between the 2 satellite radio giants. Just like the FCC did with DirecTV and Echostar a few years back, the FCC may block the possible merger of the only 2 SatRad companies.
Read more at FMQB.com
CONGRATS TO HOWARD!
GSI would like to congratulate Howard Stern and Sirius on a great year! Those of us who have been listening to Howard for awhile (back in the K-Rock/WBCN days!) think that the show sounds better than ever! It has been a great year for Sirius and Howard. 6 million subscribers (I started listening when there was less than a million!) and a profitable year. I am sure that all the stock holders are happy!
I know GSI has been not updating for over 2 months now. But as one of the GSI team members, I am going to try and make an effort to post more and keep fans of Sirius up to date. I hope that the other team members can start up again as well, so that us fans of Sirius can keep up to date on the happenings with the satellite Radio Service.
Jay Thomas on Letterman
SIRIUS Stars Jay Thomas will on David Letterman Wednesday October 25th.
He will be plugging Sirius Internet
Radio, and his new movie Santa Clause 3
, were Thomas is the Easter Bunny.
Each year for over 10 years Jay Thomas has been on Letterman around Christmas trying to knock a meatball off the top of a Christmas tree with a Football. More on that here..