Radio legend Ron Chapman, who helped pioneer the “oldies” format in DFW, came out of retirement earlier this year to format a brand-new oldies station–KPMZ-FM (Platinum 96.7)–that took dead aim at oldies leader KLUV-FM (98.7), Chapman’s previous employer. Now it looks like his efforts may be paying off. In the summer Arbitron Trend rankings among 35- to 64-year-olds from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.–the heart of the oldies/morning-drive audience–the new Platinum nabbed a 1.1 while KLUV scored a 4.9, down significantly from a 7.1 in the last ranking period. Chapman says Platinum’s rating was “better than I expected”–and came straight out of KLUV’s hide. Jody Dean, Chapman’s successor as KLUV’s morning-drive guy, didn’t return calls seeking comment.
UPDATE: Dean, whose mentor was Chapman, likens the radio legend–and his ratings claim–to the situation with former Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre. “Favre came out of retirement and has had some success with the New York Jets, but I don’t know that they’re going to the Super Bowl,” Dean says. Then he adds: “Ron also retired–even though I told him not to–but then came back. (He never listens to me!) So it’s a little like dad giving the family business to his son, then coming back and starting a competing business.” Ouch.