Friday, June 13, 2014

Evolution flips to Country as 101.7 The Bull

Boston hasn't been a two-country station since September 1996 when Greater Media consolidated its WBCS 96.9 and then-newly-acquired rival WKLB 105.7. Over the past 18 years, WKLB/Country 102.5 has had a virtual monopoly on country format in town and is currently one of the top rated stations in the market in some of the key age demographics. 

However, WKLB is about to get some company. Starting at Noon today Clear Channel Boston made yet another flip on the former WFNX 101.7 frequency dumping a year and a half-old dance/EDM format known as "Evolution 101.7"(BRW 12/20/12) to what's known in the industry as the 'bro' country' format "101.7 The Bull". The official format launch will take place during afternoon drive time at 3pm. 

Here's the official press release from Clear Channel Boston on Bull's launch :


101.7 THE BULL BRINGS NEW HIT COUNTRY STATION
TO BOSTON FEATURING COMMERCIAL-FREE
MUSIC -- ALL SUMMER LONG

Country’s Top On-Air Personality Bobby Bones
Joins Show Lineup

BOSTON – June 13, 2014 – Clear Channel Media and Entertainment Boston announced today the debut of 101.7 The Bull, Boston’s New Hit Country effective immediately.  101.7 The Bull will kick off with commercial-free music for the entire summer featuring the newest hits from Country artists such as Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean, Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church and Miranda Lambert.

In addition, 101.7 The Bull will feature award-winning Country morning program The Bobby Bones Showbeginning this summer.  The morning show entertains listeners with a unique mix of pop-culture, news and music and features on-air personalities Bobby Bones, Lunchbox and Amy, with special guest appearances from the biggest names in Country music straight from Nashville.  101.7 The Bull programming will also include local news and events, exclusive album premieres, new song releases and a team of local Boston personalities to be announced soon.

“We are excited to launch 101.7 The Bull, a fresh new take on Country music, for our Boston listeners.  This station is for the new generation of Country music fans and will give our listeners a front-row seat to Country’s biggest artists and concerts,” said Dylan Sprague, Vice President of Programming for Clear Channel Media and Entertainment Boston.  “Listeners will also enjoy waking up with the Bobby Bones Show and his unique and entertaining insight on Country music.  No one is closer to the heartbeat of Nashville than Bobby Bones.”

Prior to 101.7 The Bull, the signal aired Electronic Dance Music (EDM) as Evolution 101.7.  Boston’s EDM fans can continue to listen to Evolution 101.7 on the station’s website, www.evolution1017.com, on 107.9 HD2 and oniHeartRadio, Clear Channel's all-in-one digital radio service. 

“Evolution 101.7 attracted a passionate and loyal audience on iHeartRadio in a short period of time, and the number of fans listening digitally continues to grow rapidly,” Sprague continued.  “We’re excited to continue to provide Boston’s EDM fans with the same great programming on Evolution 101.7 through iHeartRadio, featuring local shows from Pete Tong, Sisanie, DJ Costa and DJ Cesar.  Also Evolution Underground, which supports local DJs by letting them take over the station, will continue to air after hours on Saturdays.”

Fans can also listen to 101.7 The Bull on the station's website, www.TheBull1017.com, and on iHeartRadio.  iHeartRadio delivers everything listeners want in one free, fully-integrated service: instant access to more than 1,500 of the nation's most popular live broadcast and digital-only radio stations from 150 cities, plus user-created custom stations inspired by favorite artists and songs.  iHeartRadio also offers listeners a "Perfect For" feature which allows users to choose from thousands of curated stations based on a range of moods and activities.  New - iHeartRadio Talk feature offers on-demand listener-created talk content alongside popular news, celebrity and entertainment “audiosodes.” iHeartRadio Talk also features “Daily Pulse,” a customizable Talk channel featuring the most up-to-date news and culture highlights, to which users can add or remove content that is most important to them.

Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/TheBull1017


BRW Notebook :

And in other news... : In a move to bolster its local news footprint and audience, Boston’s WGBH 89.7 is adding a third hour to Boston Public Radio, which in April was the top-rated public radio midday show for its noon-2pm time slot.

Starting in September, Boston Public Radio will begin airing at 11am weekdays according to WGBH press release.

Hosted by Jim Braude and Margery Eagan, the show which debuted in February 2013(BRW 2/6/13) has made dramatic audience gains compared to last year. WGBH is now surpassing public radio news competitor WBUR 90.9 in that time period.

To make room for an expanded BPR, The Takeaway will move to an earlier timeslot, airing 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. The Diane Rehm Show, which is now airing at that time, will be dropped from the schedule. The Takeaway, a WGBH Radio co-production, originates at WNYC in New York.



Thursday, June 5, 2014

New talk format to debut on 1510 next week

As reported here first(BRW 4/29), Quincy-based 50,000-watt station WUFC 1510 will switch to a variety talk format (under the auspices of New Jersey-based Wallis Communications management) starting at 6am on Monday(6/9). As detailed in the press release below, the format will incorporate politics, news, sports and comedy with its new daily line-up of nationally syndicated show. The station's new website is still being developed and can be found at www.1510wufc.com

Among the highlights of 1510's new venture is the return to Boston of former overnight syndicated sports personality JT The Brick. He had been a longtime fixture on WEEI 93.7/850 and WBZ 98.5/The SportsHub and built a very strong listener following in the Boston market. WEEI picked up NBC Sports Radio for its overnight schedule in January when Fox Sports Radio moved his show to 6pm-10pm ET time slot.

Here's more information on WUFC's new venture :

1510 AM WUFC Adds Bob Levy's Ear's Wide Open and J.T. The Brick To Schedule

1510AM WUFC  announced the addition of comedian The. Rev Bob Levy's New Show Ear's Wide Open to its programming schedule.  The daily comedy and entertainment talk program hosted by the comedian and former Howard Stern personality and co-hosted by comedian Stacey Prussman will be heard Monday - Friday from 9pm - 12am ET.  

The station has also announced the addition of J.T. The Brick to its programming schedule.  The daily sports and entertainment talk program hosted by national talk show host J.T The Brick and co-hosted by Tomm Looney will be heard Monday - Friday from 6pm - 9pm ET.  

On June 9, 2014 1510 AM WUFC, which serves the greater Massachusetts , area as well as parts of New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Maine is flipping formats from Yahoo Sports to News/Talk/Comedy.  The rest of the programming line up includes Wallis Communication's The Dr. K Show (6am--9am)  Premiere Radio’s Glenn Beck (9am-12noon), Fox Sports Radio's Jay Mohr Sports (12pm-3pm), The Genesis Communications Networks "Infowars With Alex Jones"(3pm-6pm).

1510 AM WUFC is programmed and operated by Wallis Communications will operate and manage WUFC under an LMA with current licensee, Blackstrap Broadcasting pending FCC approval of a license transfer.   For additional information, please contact Bryan Berner, COO and General Manager.

BRW Notebook :

Vacation listening : If you happen to be visiting the Cape and the Islands this summer, WMVY Radio Vineyard has returned to the terrestrial air in Martha's Vineyard after listeners contributed $600,000 to support a new signal following the sale of the station's 30 year-old frequency at 92.7 to Boston University back in late 2012(BRW 12/5/12). The new frequency is located at 88.7FM. The station is also heard on a repeater at 96.5FM frequency in Newport, RI area.

River finds a spot on 128 : Haverhill's WXRV/92.5 The River has a new repeater station around the very busy and congested Mass Pike/Rt.9/Rt 128 interchange. A 10-watt transmitter was built in Needham earlier this year and has begun operating over the Memorial Day weekend simulcasting 92.5 River's music programming on 96.5 frequency. 

Executive shuffle : Last week, Entercom Boston's Market Manager Phil Zachary shuffled up his sales leadership team. Melissa Capuano moves from National Sales Manager to the Director Of Sales position. Kelly Sutton is now the sales manager for sports and talk (WEEI 93.7/WEEI 850 and WRKO 680/93.7HD-2). Sutton started with the company in 2002, coming over from CBS Radio. And, Dana Panepinto retains his current title as director of sports sponsorship sales, and adds additional responsibility beyond the company’s Boston Red Sox Radio Network. Zachary said he’s proud to promote from within the organization. “Melissa, Kelly, and Dana share a combined three decades of leadership experience at Entercom Boston. I can think of no finer, nor more deserving, group to steer our revenue-generation efforts in this new era of advertising accountability.” The Entercom Boston cluster consists of: WAAF 107.3/WKAF 97.7, WEEI 93.7, WRKO 680, and ESPN Radio 850....Speaking of Entercom, Zachary and his team will have their  hands full this summer with renegotiating new contracts for WEEI's morning hosts John Dennis and Gerry Callahan and WRKO's afternooner Howie Carr....Over at Greater Media Boston, there were also some shuffles involving some programming and production veteran staffers.