Spanish-Language Stations Show Strength in Numbers


Despite dropping nearly a full percentage point in its share of listeners, Spanish-language music station KLVE-FM (107.5) remained in the top slot in the Los Angeles radio market for the sixth quarter in a row, according to ratings released Tuesday.

But the big story in the Arbitron audience survey, showing what a powerhouse Spanish-language radio has become, was the sudden rise of KSCA-FM (101.9), which, to the chagrin of longtime fans, converted Feb. 5 from English-language adult album alternative music to Mexican regional music.

KSCA went from a 1.1% share of the market, ranking 29th, to a 3.5% share, sixth best. The share is the percentage of the listening audience that tunes in for at least five minutes in any continuous 15-minute period.


Considering that the survey period was from Jan. 2 to March 26, it’s conceivable that KSCA might have done even better had it been employing the Spanish format for the entire quarter.

The station also fared well among listeners aged 25 to 54, a key demographic for many radio advertisers--going from 1.7% and 20th place in the previous quarter to 3.9% and fourth place with the new format. And in morning drive, from 6-10 a.m., KSCA made a stunning jump to 3% and 14th place from 0.8% and 30th place.

Meanwhile, shock jock Howard Stern not only didn’t get a bump from the opening of his autobiographical motion picture, “Private Parts,” he fell on KLSX-FM (97.1), dropping from a 5.6% share and second place last quarter to 4.8%, tying for third place.

KLSX-FM itself took a big plunge in the overall standings, dropping from a 2.5% share and a 13th place tie to 1.9% and 23rd place.

The top four radio slots in the market, which covers Los Angeles and Orange counties, remained the same, with KKBT-FM (92.3) getting a better grip on second place, moving from 4.9% to 5.5%. Both hip-hop station KPWR-FM (105.9) and talk outlet KFI-AM (640) kept last quarter’s ranking at 4.6% and 4.3%, respectively.

Moving into fifth place was KTWV-FM (94.7), otherwise known as “The Wave,” which boosted its audience share from 3.6% to 3.8%.


KLAX-FM (97.9), which had been in fifth place last quarter with 4.1%, slid to 3.3%.

In morning drive, KLVE retained the top slot while KKBT’s “House Party” moved into second place over KLSX’s Stern broadcast.

Among 25- to 54-year-olds, KLVE retained first place and KTWV moved into second. KKBT was third.

In measurement of total listeners, which in radio-speak is called “cume,” KPWR was first with 1,454,300 listeners, KIIS-FM (102.7) was second with 1,368,000 listeners and KRTH-FM (101.1) was third with 1,257,000. Cume is the number of different people who tune to the station for at least five minutes during an average week of Arbitron’s survey.


Radio Ratings

The area’s Top 25 stations and their Arbitron ratings for the first quarter of 1997 compared with the preceding three months:


CURRENT LAST QUARTER 1. KLVE-FM 6.0 6.9 2. KKBT-FM 5.5 4.9 3. KPWR-FM 4.6 4.6 4. KFI-AM 4.3 4.3 5. KTWV-FM 3.8 3.6 6. KSCA-FM 3.5 1.1 7. KROQ-FM 3.4 2.9 8. KRTH-FM 3.3 3.7 9. KLAX-FM 3.2 4.0 --KIIS-FM 3.2 3.1 --KOST-FM 3.2 3.9 12. KABC-AM 3.0 3.2 13. KCBS-FM 2.8 1.9 14. KBIG-AM 2.7 2.5 15. KNX-AM 2.4 2.5 --KLAC-AM 2.4 2.2 17. KLOS-FM 2.3 2.0 18. KYSR-FM 2.1 2.3 --KTNQ-AM 2.1 2.1 --KFWB-AM 2.1 1.9 --KZLA-FM 2.1 2.9 22. KBUE-FM 2.0 1.7 23. KLSX-FM 1.9 2.5 24. KIBB-FM 1.8 1.2 25. KJLH-FM 1.7 1.2


The ratings survey covers people 12 and older listening between 6 a.m. and midnight, from Jan. 2 through March 26.