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Gino Out: Long-Time DJ Leaves Monster RX 93.1

‘The Morning Rush’ lost another of its well-known voices.

Gino Quillamor announced his departure from Monster RX 93.1 this past week. He made his last appearance on Wednesday, June 20, and following the show he tweeted “Peace out!”, which led to questions from some of his followers with regards to his departure from the station.

Gino initially joined ‘The Morning Rush’ as a substitute to Delamar Arias in 2011. Almost immediately, he and Chico Garcia clicked as a tandem, with ‘Rushers’ dubbing the duo as ‘ChiChi and GiGi’.

Under Chico and Gino, ‘The Morning Rush’ introduced new segments to keep up with an increasingly younger audience. Two of these segments, Epic Pic and Epic Rap-offs, became immediate hits with the listeners.

Even as Delamar returned from maternity leave in late 2011, RX management was so impressed with Gino that the station promoted him to work ‘The Morning Rush’ on a full-time basis. The trio of Chico, Delamar and Gino would remain together until July 2016 when Delamar left the station to focus on her family.

After Bea Fabregas briefly filled Delamar’s role, Chico and Gino continued to host the show without a female co-host for the next several months. Then in April of last year, RX found a new co-host in Rica Garcia, and this setup remained until last Wednesday.

In the wake of Gino’s departure, RX decided to keep ‘The Morning Rush’ as a three-person team by adding Hazel Aguilon as its newest co-host. But it remains to be seen if this will be an temporary experiment or a full-time gig.

Much like Delamar’s departure two years ago, RX will find it difficult to replace a Gino Quillamor. Hazel may be an established voice within the station, but filling the shoes of Gino is easier said than done.

Unless ‘Rushers’ are convinced that Hazel is a worthy replacement, ‘The Morning Rush’ will once again have to endure some growing pains. But for a show that has accomplished a lot of late despite a revolving door of female hosts (see the 2018 KBP Golden Dove Awards), they will do just fine.

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FTT Year 2017 in Review: The Hot or Not Stories That Define the Year in Media (Part II)

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2018, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at some of the Hot or Not moments that define the Philippine media this year.

If you missed out on Part I of this series, click on the highlighted link for more information.

Here is Part II of the four-part series. These stories are arranged in no particular order.

HOT: Ben and Erwin Tulfo

The two Tulfo brothers began the year as hosts of their respective programs (Ben for ‘Bitag Live’, Erwin for ‘Punto Asintado’) on Radyo5 92.3 News FM. But after a highly-publicized feud with journalist Ed Lingao last June, Ben and Erwin elected to quit their jobs with Radyo5 and move over to PTV-4 (where they host ‘Kilos Pronto’ with Alex Santos) and Radyo Pilipinas full-time.

While Ben moved ‘Bitag Live’ to join its sister programs over to PTV-4, Erwin returned to newscasting with ‘Radyo Pilipinas Nationwide’ and ‘PTV News’ where he is joined by Weng dela Peña and Diane Querrer respectively. Erwin also brought his ‘Erwin Tulfo Live’ over to Radyo Pilipinas and started a talk show with President Rodrigo Duterte called ‘Sa Totoo Lang’.

NOT: Raffy Tulfo

Meanwhile, the lone remaining Tulfo on TV5 continued to butcher the already damaged reputation of its news division by changing the format anew of ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’. As a result, the erstwhile newscast became a full-on television counterpart to Raffy’s radio program ‘Wanted sa Radyo’ by emphasizing more on citizen complaints than actual news reports.

Notwithstanding the recent addition of Marga Vargas as co-anchor, it was clear that having Raffy on ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ is doing more harm than good to News5’s morale. Perhaps the departure of his brothers plus News5’s decline in quality may have taken its toll on Raffy, and giving him the walking papers may be inevitable.

HOT: DZMM TeleRadyo and Dobol B sa News TV

In April, a new-look DZMM TeleRadyo was unveiled to a nationwide audience, featuring an improved visual presentation and a new set for ‘Sakto’, ‘Good Vibes’, ‘On the Spot’ and ‘Todo-Todo Walang Preno’. They also added a selection of ABS-CBN News programs and two newscasts to the lineup in ‘Headline Pilipinas’ and an ‘early edition’ of ‘Bandila’.

Not to be outdone, rival Super Radyo DZBB 594 returned to television via ‘Dobol B sa News TV’ after a four-year hiatus. The station also started to cross over to social media by airing select programs live on Facebook, much like DZMM does on occasion.

NOT: News5 in General

The self-destruction of News5 continued throughout the year. Not only did the network lose Ben and Erwin Tulfo among other talents, they also cancelled ‘Aksyon sa Umaga’ and shortened ‘Aksyon Tonite’ in favor of sports programming from ESPN5.

It also didn’t help that its leader Luchi Cruz-Valdes disappeared from radio and television altogether due to health concerns. Overall, the future does not look bright for News5 and the inevitability of dissolution draws even closer as each day passes.

HOT: 97.9 Home Radio

Call it a rebirth as the ‘old’ 97.9 Home Radio returned to the airwaves last July. Gone is the Top 40 style of previous years, and to the delight of its loyal listeners, Home Radio resurrected its familiar ‘easy listening’ format.

The reformat of Home Radio back to its roots should give 96.3 Easy Rock a run for its money. After all, with Easy Rock offering a bland Love Radio-like approach, a more diverse playlist is more than enough for listeners to switch to Home Radio instead.

NOT: 90.7 Love Radio

They may continue to boast that they were the No. 1 radio station in Metro Manila for nearly (self-proclaimed) two decades now, but the grip is slipping for 90.7 Love Radio. The loss of Papa Jack (now 106.7 Energy FM’s Papa Jackson) became too large of a hole to fill, and despite having the talented duo of Chris Tsuper and Nicole Hyala, this year overall is not a good one for Love Radio.

Getting surpassed by MOR 101.9 in the ratings is insult to injury to Love Radio’s psyche. And if that is not enough, Lloyd Cafe Cadena is no Papa Jackson, which is hard to accept for any listener of the said station.

HOT: FM1 and FM2

The two FM stations under the PCOO umbrella officially signed on this year: 104.3 FM2 in February and 87.5 FM1 in November. Within months, FM2 became the top-rated FM radio station among the upscale listening public thanks in large part to their diverse format featuring classic songs from the 70s up to the 90s.

As for FM1, the station is currently in test broadcast and is expected to launch early next year. Unlike FM2, FM1 will focus on the younger demographic with a format consisting of music from the 2000s onwards, which should give established stations like Magic 89.9 and Monster RX 93.1 a run for their money.

NOT: Retro 105.9

The original ‘retro’ FM radio station in Metro Manila faced new competition in the form of FM2 this year. Initially, Retro 105.9 was the top FM radio station among Metro Manila’s upscale listeners, but a surge from FM2 ended their reign.

Making matters worse is Retro 105.9’s latest rebrand that took place in November, dismissing almost all of its on-air staff in favor of a mostly automated approach. With FM2 imposing its will on the upscale market, it seems like the days of Retro 105.9 as the source of anything ‘retro’ music is being numbered by the day.

Part III of this four-part series is coming up this Thursday. Stay tuned.

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In 100 Words: Delamar Returns to Radio

Delamar Arias has come out of retirement.

Nearly a year after her departure from Monster RX 93.1 and ‘The Morning Rush’, Delamar shocked the world when she decided to return to the radio booth. But instead of rejoining her mates at RX, Delamar announced that she will instead move to Magic 89.9 on a part-time basis.

Delamar will join fellow DJ/mothers Riki Flores and Andi Manzano for a new program called ‘The Mother Show’. As its title suggests, the show will focus on issues concerning motherhood.

The premiere date of ‘The Mother Show’ is yet to be determined, but Magic 89.9 said it will air on Fridays during Friday Madness. As mentioned earlier, this is only a part-time role for Delamar, but at least listeners are more than happy to have her voice back on the radio.

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In 100 Words: The Morning Rush’s New Recruit

Monster RX 93.1 found a permanent replacement for Delamar, and they didn’t need to go outside.

RX recently announced that Rica Garcia will be the new third host of ‘The Morning Rush’ alongside Chico Garcia (no relation) and Gino Quillamor. The announcement came amid clamor from TMR’s long-time listeners who wanted a female voice following the departures of Delamar Arias and now-Magic 89.9 DJ Bea Fabregas.

Prior to earning the gig with ‘The Morning Rush’, Rica joined RX in 2016 as part of the Radio 1 student DJ program. Rica, according to her social media pages, is also a freelance makeup artist and has her own YouTube channel dedicated to makeup tutorials.

Only time will tell whether or not Rica will be a good fit to ‘The Morning Rush’. For now, good luck to her.

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Papa Jack’s Departure Could Test Love Radio’s Claim as the No. 1 Metro Manila FM Radio Station

It has been over two weeks since John Gemperle (a.k.a. Papa Jack) officially left 90.7 Love Radio.

After all, the popular DJ had been a fixture of the station for over a decade, hosting the long-running programs ‘TLC: True Love Conversations’ and ‘Wild Confessions’. And more recently, he was paired with Kara Karinyosa (real name Klariz Magboo) to form the equally popular ‘KarJack’ tandem.

Papa Jack’s brand of providing love advice to listeners has been comparable to fellow DJs Tom Alvarez of Monster RX 93.1 and Slick Rick, Tony Toni and Sam YG of Magic 89.9. As Love Radio is more well-known as a ‘masa’ station, Papa Jack’s style fits well with the station’s format, as he typically provides distinct and sometimes blunt responses to his callers.

On his last broadcast that was aired on December 16, 2016, Papa Jack did not cite a reason for his resignation. He did give one last advice to his followers on Facebook a few weeks later.

With Papa Jack being considered the face of Love Radio in the past decade (no offense to Chris Tsuper and Nicole Hyala), his departure could mark the beginning of the end for the station. However, as Love Radio once again claimed to be the No. 1 Metro Manila FM radio station for the 15th consecutive year, there seems to be no concern on their part.

Still, their so-called boast as the No. 1 station in the Metro was overly exaggerated. If Love Radio claims to be No. 1 in all of Metro Manila, where are the figures to prove it?

So far, no one has publicly issued a statement with regards to ratings on Metro Manila FM radio. As far as the more knowledgeable people are concerned, Love Radio is not No. 1 unless they issue an actual document that proves otherwise.

That said, without any proof, Love Radio has no right to name themselves No. 1 for the 15th year in a row. They must back it all up, otherwise listeners will tune out.

For now, 90.7 Love Radio can boast all they want being No. 1 and all. But without the face that runs this side of Pasay every night, how much longer can they hold on?

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FTT Year 2016 in Review: The 20 Stories That Define the Year in Media (Part III)

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2017, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at the 20 moments that define the Philippine media this year.

If you missed out on Part I and Part II of this series, click on the highlighted link for more information.

Here is Part III of the four-part series. These stories are arranged in no particular order.

Pinoy Boyband Superstar Answers To the Top

Last year, GMA created its own reality talent show for up-and-coming Filipino boybands, ‘To the Top’. This year, ABS-CBN struck back by bringing the ‘La Banda’ franchise to the Philippines under the name ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’.

Unfortunately for GMA, the popularity of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ far exceeded ‘To the Top’. The former constantly gained ratings of 30% or better while airing at a more convenient timeslot of 6:50 p.m., whereas the latter only mustered around 7-8% ratings while airing at a not-so attractive timeslot of 9:45-10:00 p.m.

Despite the success of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’, it remains to be seen if BoybandPH can become a more popular boyband than Top One Project ever was. That said, the key to both boybands at this point is to outsell each other in order to win the hearts of fans.

Delamar Leaves RX 93.1’s The Morning Rush

‘The Morning Rush’ on Monster RX 93.1 is an institution in Philippine FM radio, having aired continuously for over two decades. So when Delamar Arias decided to leave both the show and the station on July 29, listeners, or ‘rushers’, were stunned.

After all, Delamar, along with long-time partner Chico Garcia and recent addition Gino Quillamor, were instrumental in the show’s success, with the ‘Top 10’ segment becoming the most popular segment. Her departure left a glaring hole on ‘The Morning Rush’, one they have struggled to fill since.

Delamar was not the only high-profile departure from the station. A few weeks later, Bea Fabregas left RX to focus on hosting FOX Sports Philippines’ ‘Fox Sports Minute’ and ‘The GOAT’, while Karen Bordador was arrested for alleged drug possession and was de facto removed from the station.

The Launch of PBA Rush, Plus UFC on TV5 and Olympic Coverage

If Solar Entertainment has NBA Premium TV, then TV5 has its own channel for the PBA in PBA Rush. Launched prior to the 2016 Governors’ Cup, PBA Rush is considered the Filipino version of NBA TV, featuring live and archived PBA games plus special programs dedicated to the league.

The timing of PBA Rush’s launch couldn’t have come at an important time, as that year’s Governors’ Cup saw Barangay Ginebra San Miguel end an eight-year title drought at the expense of the Meralco Bolts. Ginebra’s win would have concluded PBA’s run with TV5, but instead the partnership between the two was renewed in time for the ongoing Philippine Cup.

TV5 also made a high-profile acquisition when it purchased the broadcast rights to the UFC, promising it to air live on its HYPER channel. Unfortunately, TV5’s coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics was a difficult one, as the network struggles to deal with its decline in programming quality.

Other Sports Stories on TV

ABS-CBN Sports replaced the UFC by focusing on local and regional mixed martial arts, namely the Alvin Aguilar-led URCC, and the Southeast Asia-based One Championship. They also brought in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) as part of its continued commitment to local and regional sports.

Solar Sports dabbled into collegiate basketball by airing the NAASCU, while IBC-13 and AksyonTV aired the UCBL and CESAFI tournaments respectively. However, the biggest draws remain the NCAA and the UAAP, where the San Beda Red Lions and the De La Salle Green Archers won their respective championships.

Finally, in women’s volleyball, ABS-CBN Sports acquired the rights to the Shakey’s V-League, beginning a contentious rivalry between the V-League and the TV5-aired Philippine SuperLiga.

Be My Lady Reigns, Ryzza Mae’s Run Ends

‘Be My Lady’, topbilled by real-life couple Erich Gonzales and Daniel Matsunaga,was the top draw at the pre-noontime slot for much of this year. Airing for 221 episodes from January 18 to November 25, the series earned ratings of nearly 20%, besting the competition in the process.

The aforementioned competition included a pair of shows starring Ryzza Mae Dizon: ‘Princess in the Palace’, and ‘Calle Siete’. But with Ryzza already entering the pre-teen stage of her life, it was clear that she was no longer the charmingly cute presence of years past.

In the end, TAPE decided to cease starring her on the pre-noontime slot beginning October 24, and gave the BAES (along with Taki Sato) of ‘Eat Bulaga’ a lead role in ‘TROPS’.

Part IV of this four-part series is coming up tomorrow. Stay tuned.

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