Santa Monica's KCRW-FM (89.9) has already made it clear that the station would like to welcome former KPCC-FM (89.3) morning host Madeleine Brand to its team. But would the station be willing to move its signature show to do so?
The latest look at Brand's sudden departure from KPCC comes courtesy of Los Angeles Magazine. The very last graph of Gabriel Kahn's story notes that the popular public radio personality is currently in discussions with KCRW for a morning show, one that would air at 9 a.m. That's a slot Brand knows well, but also the current home of Morning Becomes Eclectic, KCRW's nationally recognized three-hour music show hosted by Jason Bentley.
KCRW General Manager Jennifer Ferro has already told The Times that bringing Brand to the station is something they were going to "try to make" happen. "Madeleine's really talented and definitely belongs on the radio in Los Angeles," Ferro told The Times earlier this month.
What any potential deal may mean for Morning Becomes Eclectic -- which first aired in 1977 -- appears to be up in the air. Ferro, in an emailed statement Thursday, said it was too soon to speculate.
"KCRW is definitely talking with the talented Madeleine Brand, but it's too early to be picking time slots," she wrote. "Morning Becomes Eclectic is our signature music show and doing well beyond our expectations. Good things take time to develop and so we're taking our time."
While KCRW Arbitron ratings have trailed those of KPCC, the former has built its audience around music programming. KCRW and Morning Becomes Eclectic are ubiquitous at the annual South by Southwest music conference in Austin, Texas, and the station has been aggressive in developing Web and mobile applications around its music and Electic24 brands. This is in addition to the station's presence at local shows and a variety of free summer concerts that KCRW sponsors around town.
If given a 9 a.m. slot on KRCW, Brand would compete against KPCC's "Take Two," which is hosted by Alex Cohen and Al Martínez in her former time slot.