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KPWR-FM Hip-Hops to a Top Ratings Share : Radio: Station ties for first with the Spanish-language KLAX-FM, the leader for 2 1/2 years.


Hip-hop KPWR-FM (105.9) has muscled its way back up the charts to the top spot among local radio stations, according to Arbitron radio ratings released Tuesday, tying for first place with the established front-runner, Spanish-language KLAX-FM (97.9).

KPWR had been in second place in the previous three-month survey but rose during the summer from 5.1% to 5.4% of the average daily audience. The station's morning team, tha Baka Boyz, was in sixth place, down one slot.

Despite its 2 1/2-year dominance of the local airwaves, KLAX saw its 6.1% share of the audience drop to 5.4% over the summer, while its rowdy morning team of Juan Carlos Hidalgo and El Peladillo (Jesus Garcia) fell from first place to third.

Howard Stern was the top morning personality, moving up from second place last spring. Stern, heard on classic-rock station KLSX-FM (97.1), was followed in second place by the veteran KABC-AM (790) team of Ken Minyard and Roger Barkley.

The KROQ-FM (106.7) morning team of Kevin Ryder and Gene (Bean) Baxter dropped from ninth to 10th place, while the KLOS-FM (95.5) morning duo, Mark Thompson and Brian Phelps, remained in seventh place.

Talk station KFI-AM (640) rose from sixth place overall to third, with 4.7% of the audience--a jump that may have been fueled by the O.J. Simpson murder case, which dominated most talk-radio programs during the second half of June and beyond. The bodies of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman were discovered June 13; the Arbitron ratings survey covered the period from June 23 to Sept. 14.

KFI's morning-drive period, which includes the shows of Bill Handel and the first hour of Rush Limbaugh, also soared--from 10th place and 3.8% of the audience, to fourth, drawing 5% of all listeners tuned in to radio during that period.

Rival talk station KABC also appeared to benefit somewhat from O.J.-mania, rising from ninth to eighth.

But all-news stations did not seem to share in the flood of attention surrounding the Simpson case, with KFWB-AM (980) dropping from 14th to 19th place and KNX-AM (790) remaining static with a 2.6% share of the audience. KMPC-AM (710), which switched to an all-talk format on May 2, remained in 31st place, where it had been in the previous ratings period.

Oldies station KRTH-FM (101.1) made one of the biggest jumps of the period, leapfrogging from the 10th spot and a 3.2% share of the audience last spring, to sixth place and a 3.9% share in the summer.

Radio Ratings

The area's Top 25 stations and their Arbitron ratings for the summer quarter of this year compared to the preceding three months:

CURRENT LAST QUARTER 1. KPWR-FM 5.4 6.1 KLAX-FM 5.4 5.1 3. KFI-AM 4.7 3.8 4. KROQ-FM 4.6 4.7 5. KIIS-FM/AM 4.0 3.9 6. KRTH-FM 3.9 3.2 7. KOST-FM 3.8 4.2 8. KABC-AM 3.7 3.5 9. KBIG-FM 3.6 2.9 10. KKBT-FM 3.2 3.6 11. KCBS-FM 2.9 3.0 12. KLSX-FM 2.7 2.8 KYSR-FM 2.7 2.8 14. KNX-AM 2.6 2.6 KTWV-FM 2.6 2.0 16. KLOS-FM 2.5 2.8 KLVE-FM 2.5 3.7 KZLA-FM 2.5 2.9 19. KFWB-AM 2.8 2.3 20. KTNQ-FM 2.1 2.2 KXEZ-FM 2.1 1.8 22. KKGO-FM 1.8 1.7 23. KLAC-AM 1.6 1.7 24. KRLA-AM 1.5 1.2 25. KKHJ-FM 1.3 1.7

The ratings survey covers people 12 and older listening between 6 a.m. and midnight, from June 23 to Sept. 14.

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