👋 Hi, this is Justin. Since columnist Robert Feder retired in July, the lack of daily media coverage in Chicago has been painful.
Why is it important: There’s no shortage of media news, whether it’s investigating the production of bogus newspapers, revealing new newscasts or announcing the retirement of trusted presenters.
.📈 The plot: After Nielsen audio released their September radio ratings for our metro area, we decided to pick up — a bit — where Feder left off.
State of play: Chicago is a radio city.
- Take a trip downtown to the Museum of Broadcast Communications to learn about the history of the radio exhibit.
- But the days of radio domination by stations like WGN, WBBM-AM and WGCI are over. New streaming technology and the pandemic have helped change our listening habits.
🤘 Steer the news: The Drive (WDRV) remains the last of the city’s classic rock stations. In September, the station was by far the most popular listening experience.
🎄 Finalist: Lite (WLIT) ratings typically plummet outside of its popular year-end and all-holiday lineup, but the soft rock station continues to do well without it.
- Watch them reclaim the No. 1 spot when they begin filming Bing Crosby and Gene Autry classics in November.
🗣 The other side: Summer is usually down for talk radio. WBEZ and WGN-AM both saw declines from August through September, but are expected to rebound as Election Day approaches.
- 📻 And the once-dominant Top 40 stations that now compete with streaming music services haven’t reached the top 10.
To note : These ratings do not break down time slots or specific demographics.
Full disclosure: I worked for a number of these stations.
📫 Which is your favorite radio station? We want to know in our informal Axios Chicago reader poll for a story next week.