Service promising greater creative control
Sirius should be cueing up Frank Sinatra’s version of Irving Berlin’s “Change Partners” any day now.After several years at XM Satellite Radio, Frank Sinatra Enterprises has grabbed its coat and hat and moved to Sirius Satellite Radio to a start another branded channel. It’s the first time a recording artist has jumped from one service to the other and highlights the competition for big-name exclusive programming. Sirius nabbed the deal for the Sinatra-branded channel by promising greater creative control to the Sinatra estate and a more distinctly branded channel, calling it Siriusly Sinatra. “We’ve seen Sirius become the programming leader in satellite radio with a name and reputation that represents the best there is in radio,” said Nancy Sinatra, who shopped her father’s recordings and archives to Sirius after the XM deal expired. The XM channel, Frank’s Place, went off the air about a week ago and was replaced by High Standards. Frank’s Place played a mix of swing, big band and jazz standards by Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Count Basie and Duke Ellington in addition to Sinatra. The Sirius channel will also play the standards of the era, but it agreed to step up the Frank factor, with more Sinatra songs per hour. The channel will also give singer Nancy a platform with her own weekly show. There will be a weekly show featuring Frank Sinatra himself, “The Chairman’s Hour,” created from the massive catalog of archived recordings and interviews. The channel, which debuts in March, fits into Sirius’ strategy of creating channels around celebrities like Elvis Presley and Jamie Foxx.