Sunday, July 29, 2007

July 30, 2007 News

Boo hoo! Say goodbye to Gia Gittleson, LA Magazine's effervescent Senior Editor/Guide Editor, who departs her position September 28 for nursing school.


Spoke with Daisy Ruiz, producer of a new show called "Con Chile y Limon" for Spanish-language KWHY TV Channel 22. Airing at 5:30 p.m. weekdays, it spotlights "cool and interesting things to do in and around Los Angeles." She's looking for kid/family-friendly stuff and general ideas as well. "It doesn't have to be Latino-oriented, but if it is, all the better," she says. KWHY is owned by the Telemundo network/NBC Universal, a subsidiary of NBC.


Just learned of another Spanish-language show, this one called "Los Angeles en Vivo," which airs on KRCA Channel 62 at 12:30 p.m. weekdays, spotlighting things to do. Reporter Cecilia Gonzalez told me that the magazine format program previews Latino-oriented and/or family-oriented events as well as covers them. KRCA, owned by Liberman Broadcasting, used to broadcast Asian-language programming and home shopping but now airs Spanish-language programing along with some late night English-language infomercials.


My esteemed colleague Sabrina Skacan told me that A&E has cancelled its long-running "Breakfast with the Arts," replacing it with "Private Sessions," an hour-long show featuring contemporary music acts, which made its debut July 22.

According to this story I found in Broadcasting & Cable, "The series, hosted by VH1 Classics' Lynn Hoffman, will feature popular musical acts in performances taped in New York and interspersed with interview footage. With guests like 22-year-old pop singer Avril Lavigne, country star Toby Keith and classic-rock belter Meat Loaf, Sessions is aimed squarely at the 18-54 demo. A&E has slated 14 episodes for 2007. The move to swap Sessions for Breakfast, which favored jazz, classical and Broadway music, is consistent with A&E's recent strategy of targeting younger viewers with action-packed reality shows and high-profile acquired dramas like 'The Sopranos.'"



Thanks to Carol Stevenson of Kevin/Ross Public Relations for passing on this info about a recent Bulldog Reporter report spotlighting Los Angeles Times science/health/medicine coverage. The piece quoted Science/Medicine editor Ashley Dunn as welcoming local and national pitches and saying that the paper's stories are syndicated through the Tribune-McClatchy news service.

Dunn oversees the science/medicine desk for breaking news, clinical trends and enterprise stories. The Bulldog story also mentioned the following writers and their beats (email addresses all

Consumer-health features for the Monday Health section:
Tami Dennis and Rosie Mestel

Healthcare business providers and payers:
Lisa Girion

Healthcare business pharma and biotech:
Daniel Costello

Global warming:
Alan Zarembo

Psychology and biotech:
Denise Gellene

Karen Kaplan

Infectious diseases:
Jia-Rui Chong

General medicine:
Thomas. H. Maugh II

Space exploration:
John Johnson

More from this story: "These are the main areas they're responsible for," [Dunn] explains, but they often back up each other and any might be called on to write about a particular topic. "Alan Zarembo is covering global warming, but he won't do that forever," Dunn notes. "He'll do that for a year or so and move back to medicine. Denise is covering psychology, but she's also our expert in anything to do with pharmaceuticals. Some stories on pharma issues are beyond our skill level, so we turn to Denise." He adds that "we all sit together. You don't have to worry about getting it to just the right person. When someone sees something interesting, they flag it for others."

Sunday, July 22, 2007

July 23, 2007 News

For those of you living in a cave who haven't already heard, LA Weekly axed Music Editor Kate Sullivan and replaced her with Randall Roberts, who has a message for us on his web site.

At Westways, Robin Jones is now managing editor, moving up from features editor and taking over the title from the departed (as in left the magazine) Danielle Pedersen. Brenda Tabor remains features editor, one of one rather than one of two.

I'm passing along this wonderful post with before-and-after shots of how Redbook mutilated retouched a cover photo of Faith Hill. And Jezebel has this link to a 2004 USA Today story on a similar topic.

LA Observed reports that Donnell Robertson is taking over the editor's job at New Angeles Monthly from Nikki Bazar, who is moving to Portland. Also, former LA Weekly staffer Alan Mittelstaedt moves to fill the departed Dean Kuipers's role as City Beat's news editor.

LA Times editorial staff directory was updated July 5. Someone finally got the memo about the Mike Penner-Christine Daniels situation.

Friday, July 13, 2007

July 13, 2007 News

Yesterday's post got lots of attention around the net, including this on Daily News writer Steven Rosenberg's blog. I'll take it as a compliment that he referred to PRMediaMoves as "a pretty good source for those who practice the craft of flackery." Of the new combined features section, he took pains to insist that "Local coverage will not go away from these newspapers" and revealed that the new name will be for the Daily News, Press-Telegram and Daily Breeze, but it will be titled Go! In the other six papers. He also writes about an expanded health section at the Daily News. Check it out.

Spoke yesterday with Tom Brocato, producer of the new "NOW PLAYING with Gary Collins" that airs weekly on RLTV. The program is geared toward the "baby-boomers" (55+) crowd and is apparently seen in over 26 million households. Tom is open to pitches for recognizable/familiar entertainment celebrity in-studio guests who might discuss their latest film, television project, book, theatre venture, concert or music release, charity project, etc. They tape on Wednesdays from 10 to 2 p.m. in Studio City, and need only 30 minutes of the talent's time. The program, which premiered in July, is on weekly for (initially) 13 weeks through September, each segment taped two to three weeks prior to airing. Collins is, of course, the former host of "Hour Magazine" and "The Home Show."

Pitch Tom by email, fax or phone:
Tom Brocato, Producer
"NOW PLAYING with Gary Collins"
5900 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1400
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(O) 323/930-5820
(F) 323/938-7115

LA Opera is looking for a Public Relations Manager, reporting to PR Director Gary Murphy.

Does anyone have any annoying stories/horror stories to share about calls you've received from "pretending-to-be-press" types after an event is listed on the so-called Hollywood News Calendar? I'll share mine if you'll share yours. All names will be changed to protect the (innocent) publicist.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

July 12, 2007 News

On Monday, the Los Angeles Newspaper Group, which owns just about every area daily except the Los Angeles Times, premieres its new features section, called, which will run in all nine papers: Daily News, Daily Breeze, Long Beach Press Telegram, Pasadena Star News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Whittier Daily News, San Bernadino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and Redlands Daily Facts. Pitch Daily News Entertainment Editor Rob Lowman for stories that apply to all areas (if there is such a thing, other than movies, CD/DVD releases and that kind of stuff, IMHO).

How does this affect classical music and other arts coverage of groups besides the big guys (LA Phil, LA Opera, CTG, etc.), that might generate lots of interest in, say, Pasadena but yawns in Long Beach (to say nothing of San Bernadino)? Rob's not yet sure how much room there will be in each individual paper for locally oriented arts coverage. He says that remains to be seen over time.

Sounding a little weary, he adds that things will be more clearly defined after the section has been publishing for about a month. Apparently the launch date got bumped up suddenly to July, rather than its original August target.

Until further notice, then, you can still try pitching Features Editor Catherine Gaugh or Assistant Features Editor Jerry Rice regarding all entertainment/arts/features ideas for the Pasadena, San Gabriel, Whittier, San Bernadino, Inland Valley and Redlands papers (if anyone reading this blog actually has any clients in Redlands). PSN/SGVT previous Entertainment Editor Martin Gonzalez is now just writing stories, not editing entertainment coverage. Gaugh and Rice are physically located at the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.

Marlene Greer is gone from the Long Beach Press Telegram, so if it's local to Long Beach, pitch the Press Telegram directly.

Same for the Daily Breeze – if it's a South Bay story, pitch Leo Smith. The Daily Breeze's Friday RAVE section and its Monday-Thursday features sections are morphed into this new tabloid.

For now, listings info can still be sent to each paper individually, even if it's for general Los Angeles-area events.

But basically, Rob is the man. He's a wonderful, lovely person, but w
ith all these pitches directed his way, you can see why he might not be quick to respond.


LA Times/Tribune Company website Metromix, which describes itself as ”your one-stop local entertainment guide on where to go and what to do, from the hottest restaurants and bars, to the latest in events, music, movies, and more," made its debut earlier this week. Staff is listed here, and you can submit various kinds of listings here.


Congratulations to Daily News arts writer Evan Henerson, whose wife gave birth to a son last week. Also to my dear friend and colleague Ken Werther, celebrating his 25th year in our business.


Conde Nast's Jane magazine folds after its August issue. Just a random thought – could it have had anything to do with incredibly lame cover headlines (and stories) like "Jessica [Simpson]: On Sex After Divorce"?


Irene Lacher and I had a few giggles over Arroyo Monthly office staffers getting her last name wrong, leading to my initially erroneous report earlier this week. If you have interesting Pasadena-area-based people for clients, pitch her. I also checked to see who's doing "The List" (monthly calendar) now that Tracy Spicer is gone, and she said it's John Sollenberger, who also does the calendar for Pasadena Weekly, owned by the same folks as Arroyo Monthly as well as City Beat and more.

In fact, another of their publications is Life After 50, which used to be called Senior Life. Editor remains Darcy Alvey (still based in San Diego), but Life After 50's calendar editor is Carl Kozlowski, who also still writes for Pasadena Weekly. No wonder they're all so confused.


And finally, thanks very much to Los Angeles Bureau Chief Alesandra Dubin for spotlighting this blog in the news section of BizBash.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

July 9, 2007 News

Editorial Assistant Danielle Berrin is the Jewish Journal's new Circuit Editor, replacing Norma Zager.

The Beverly Hills Courier does a shuffle, with former senior editor Chris Sieroty taking former managing editor John Seitz's title, and vice versa.

KJAZZ 88.1 FM, based in Long Beach, asks that all public service-oriented material for the station be sent to Denise Maynard at KMZT AM/KKGO FM at the company's Cotner Avenue office in Westwood. Denise handles that function for all three stations.

Replacing Julie Riggott as Arroyo Monthly Magazine editor recently is Irene Lacher. Editorial assistant Tracy Spicer is no longer there, and editorial responsibilities for things like "The List" are being shifted around, so stay tuned.
(MY CORRECTION, 12:20 p.m. -- This is indeed former LA Times staffer Irene Lacher, now a free-lance writer. The publication gave me incorrect info. Thanks to NH for clearing it up!)


Did anyone else notice this? There's an incredibly tasteless juxtaposition of ads on last Thursday's LA Times Calendar Weekend "Dining Out" supplement (E51). The
all-advertising page is intended, presumably, for restaurants, nightlife and entertainment (or so it says under the heading). The largest ad on that page, however, placed smack dab in the middle, stood out like a cockroach on white linen, boasting "Laser Hair Removal Specials," including those for underarms. Surrounded by small ads for dining establishments and The Ice House Comedy Club, this Neoskin ad exhorts readers to "Get rid of… unwanted hair now." What drew my attention to it in the first place was the particularly unappetizing headline, "SHAVE NO MORE!!" Ick.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

July 2, 2007 News

Los Angeles Magazine's Matt Segal is promoted to features editor as of August 1, and former LA Times Magazine Editor Ann Herold succeeds him as managing editor. LA Mag starts a bi-monthly travel column in September.

LA Times features writer Mary MacNamara turns TV critic. She's one of the Times' best feature writers – seems like a waste to have her reviewing television shows.

I like the LA Times' ads announcing Al Martinez's return – something on the order of "Yes, we can read [your letters]." Here's a link to his return column in today's paper.

LA Observed reports on the promotion of San Gabriel Valley Newspapers' Larry Wilson and some other changes on the editor level, plus the naming of Hector Gonzalez as Pasadena Star News city editor and of Kate Keyes as San Gabriel Valley Tribune assistant city editor, both reporting to Metro Editor Eddie Barrera.

Here's one for the "Here's Why It Pays to be Accurate on your Resume" department: Romanesko has a press release from Freedom Newspapers (OC Register, etc.) that leads with, "Marti Buscaglia, recently announced as the new publisher of The Orange County Register, will not join the company after all, said N. Christian Anderson III, current publisher of the Register… 'I regret that information came to light after we had announced Marti's appointment that precludes our being able to move forward with this decision,' Anderson said. 'She has come forward to inform us that she misrepresented her educational qualifications on her resume… '" Embarrassing for all concerned.

Speaking of accuracy (or embarrassment, perhaps), my mailing list for Rafu Shimpo was way out of date, and they were kind enough to call and correct it. The address is 138 Onizuka Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.

I read about the death of 44-year-old San Jose Mercury News veteran Richard Ramirez at LA Observed on June 21, but it wasn't until this week that I found this larger story that ran on June 22 in the Mercury News. Very sad.