Long before we knew that it was going to become a reality, Bomani Jones was calling for a G Funk Super Bowl halftime show. It happened on Sunday night. While most people sang the show’s praises, Jones noted that it was bigger than just a fun show featuring nostalgic rap acts from the 90s.
On Monday’s episode of The Right Time, Jones quickly recapped the Rams’ victory in Super Bowl LVI before saying “Y’all don’t give a damn what I thought about that football game. Y’all ain’t thought about that football game since that football game happened.
“I’m here to talk about G Funk Super Bowl. It was low riders on the field. It was dudes dancing in khaki suits. It was 50 Cent hanging upside down, and as my boy Chase said ‘looking luck Buck Moreland in a beater’. We got that too. It was Kendrick Lamar kicking a new negro spiritual at the Super Bowl. It was Mary J Blige singing one of those damn happiness carols at the Super Bowl. It was Dr. Dre saying he still not lovin’ police at the Super Bowl. It was snoop wearing basically. Head-to-toe designer Crip rag at the Super Bowl. It was Snoop Crip walking at the Super Bowl.”
Jones joked that he was happy he had invested in high-end speakers before the show.
“We was up in Harlem knocking. It was bangin’!”
While he was ready to celebrate the show for being high quality, Bomani Jones also noted it was worth celebrating that the show happened at all. He said that this idea was crystalized for him after a conversation with Mike Ryan from The Dan Le Batard Show, who insisted that last year’s performance by The Weekend was clearly superior.
“I realized some of y’all grew up at a time where they always play rap music all over the place. Some of you grew up in a time where you didn’t have people making significant value judgements about you just on the basis of rap music. People my age, I just can’t stress this enough, it was surreal to see that this is not just accepted as mainstream music, but accepted as something that America could be nostalgic about.”
Jones described the setlist as “all gangsta from start to finish.” The only reason he was disappointed was that Dr. Dre did not play anything from before his album 2001 aside from “California Love.”
The halftime show was a cultural touchstone, but it didn’t have a larger meaning attached for the league as some had speculated. According to Bomani Jones, music was all that mattered and he is still a little gobsmacked that the show happened at all.
“The idea that some real deal, hardcore rap music was being played at the Super Bowl and America wanted it was wild.”
16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming
The news comes as Nielsen reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.
According to Nielsen, sports radio stations are the third-most streamed spoken word format, just behind Talk/Personality and News/Talk/Info. The trend is continuing to show that streaming is on the uptick.
The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielson reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.
Nielsen notes that in the 45 PPM markets they are grabbing data from and the 4,800+ stations that stream in those markets, just 30% of them are encoded. That encoding allows for Nielsen to accurately measure the streams. They used the listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., in their latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets.
The survey also showed that streaming levels differ widely by radio format. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31.2%, News/Talk/Info: 19.1%, All Sports: 16.9%). In fact, Nielsen found that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats.
New Study Finds Listeners to MLB on Radio Are Willing to Spend
More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team… 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.
When it comes to advertiser’s attempting to reach an affluent and engaged audience, sports talk radio might have a whale on their hands. Major League Baseball play-by-play features an audience that has money and has no problems spending it.
In a recent MRI-Simmons study, data shows that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are the perfect audience for sports marketers. According to the analysis, done by Katz Radio Group, nearly two thirds (62%) of those surveyed consider themselves “super fans” of baseball. That number is 58% higher than the average.
Those “super fans” are willing to spend to support their team, as well. More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team. Those fans are also far more willing to make the trip to see their team. The study found that 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.
The news continues getting better for advertisers. Continued analysis reveals that 66% of listeners are currently employed and have a median household income greater than $106,000.
Listeners to MLB games on the radio are also 34% more likely to place a sports bet and 106% more likely to be a participant in fantasy baseball.
Jeff Dean Signs Off At ESPN Tucson for The Final Time
Dean said on Facebook: “…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”
Fans will no longer be able to tune into ESPN Tucson and hear Jeff Dean hosting his show. Friday morning was his last show, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages.
The Jeff Dean Show had been airing from 7-9a MT weekday mornings. Dean took to social media to relay the news and the reason behind him stepping away from the microphone. Dean said on Facebook:
“This morning I signed off from my radio show on ESPN Tucson for the final time. I have been devoting too much of my life and my time to working multiple jobs…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”
Dean went on to emphasize that he isn’t stepping away from ESPN Tucson, he’s just taking himself off the air. He also added that “gladly, I will be continuing my position as PA announcer of University of Arizona Football and Men’s basketball.”
Dean would also go onto Twitter to add even further context for his self-removal from the ESPN Tucson airwaves. He added, “It’s not a decision I arrived at hastily, as it’s been a 6 month mental grind to make the ultimate decision that had to be made, and I’m not particularly happy about it, but I have to put my health first, we all do, and make sure we’re around long enough to enjoy life”.
Dean had been ESPN Tucson’s morning host since November 2019.