Satellite switch silences some isle radio voices
A satellite switch will remove some familiar voices from KGMZ-FM 107.9 come Monday morning.
This is the last weekday opportunity listeners will have to hear local radio hosts Sharen Nakashima at midday, Bart DaSilva in the afternoon and Ken "Hutch" Hutchinson in the evening on KGMZ-FM 107.9.
Part-timers and radio veterans Jim Gardner and "The Real" Ron O'Neil will be bidding listeners "aloha" this weekend.
DaSilva has other duties with the stations and no longer will be on the air.
The others will receive severance, said Jeff Coelho, general manager of Salem Media of Hawaii Inc. It operates the six Honolulu stations owned by California-based Salem Communications Corp.
"Uncle" Tom Moffatt, whose show is on from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays, will remain with the station and will have an expanded role, Coelho said.
Moffatt and the station are preparing a series of features collectively called "50 Years of Rock and Roll Radio in Hawaii" that will air throughout the day.
Come Monday, only the Oldies 107.9 morning show will be local and Program Director Ed Kanoi will continue as host. Satellite-fed programming from New York-based Dial Global Radio Networks will fill the rest of the day. It also provides country music for KHCM-FM 97.5 and adult standards for KHUI-FM 99.5 "The Jewel."
Paul "The Kap'n" Stewart no longer will be Kanoi's co-host as he will take the reins of the KHCM morning show on Monday.
In the event of an emergency during satellite programming, the stations can go local, Coelho said.
Music research required for Oldies station growth would cost a minimum of $150,000, Coelho said.
"I'd rather put that money into promotions."
Dial Global's music already has been researched and "I can hardly wait to get it on the air," he said.
Costs are not being streamlined to prepare for a sale, Coelho said.
"You are not going to improve your costs, your bottom line, by the elimination of two people."
It was an economic decision, however, taking nothing away from the departing staffers, whom Coelho called "hard-working people."
"It's no secret that morning-drive radio drives revenue, and that's where we really need the presence," Coelho said.
Morning drive, from 5:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. generates about 65 percent of radio revenue, while 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. generates about 25 percent and evenings and overnights garner about 10 percent, he said, citing media revenue reporting firm Miller, Kaplan, Arase & Co. LLP, based in California.
"The market is definitely in contract mode and everybody's taking the necessary steps to survive and thrive - and these steps should well take care of us going forward," Coelho said.
is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4747, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org