Wednesday, July 13, 2016

WBOS completes its brand change to ALT

As of yesterday(7/12), "Radio 92.9" is out and gone. The station is now known as "Alt 92.9". While the new moniker and on-air elements may or may not make you think this is a brand new station, the transition has been in progress for better part of past two years. As you only read about it here in BRW, the station began tagging itself as "Boston's Alternative" during summer of 2014(BRW 8/18/14). 

As you may or may not recall, back on January 30, 2008, WBOS 92.9 had let go its entire on-air staff and shifted away from its longtime AAA(adult album alternative) format to concentrate on younger and hipper 18-34 demo with an alternative/modern rock alternative currents as well as format's alternative mainstays including Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, Pearl Jam, and the Dave Matthews Band. The station then had also assumed branding "Radio 92.9" which as of yesterday(7/12) is now part of Boston's radio history. While station's playlist is not at all different today, its presentation, however, has been drastically tweaked(and not to my liking) - the station runs about an hour of music followed by a very(long) 9-10 minute ad break(Ed Note : talk about bringing 'blah-blah-blah' back in a big way. I think it's an awful way to pay bills but they don't pay me for my opinions on the matter). 

Although Boston's modern and alternative rock radio scene had its ups and downs for the past three decades, WBOS has been slowly thriving and establishing its place in a rapidly changing media marketplace. While the mission of FM rock and alternative stations like WBOS has changed in recent years -. they were once about music discovery(eg late WBCN(d.2009) and WFNX(d 2012)), that role has fully shifted to diverse online sources, like YouTube and Spotify or even to band sites. However, record companies will tell you that it is still nearly impossible to have a true hit song without FM radio airplay. While there are tons and tons of different music options out there, FM rock radio is still a big part of the game.

WBOS was the 6th most popular station in Boston market among its target demographic - adults 18-34/ - in the month June. The station was behind(in order) - WXKS/Kiss 108, WBQT/Hot 96.9, WODS/Amp 103.3,  WJMN/Jamn 94-5 and WMJX/Magic 106.7.

BRW Notebook :

VB is back in the house : Although WRKO 680's Morning show title still says "featuring Kim Carrigan", as of last Tuesday(7/5), Doug 'VB" Goudie is now officially full-time co-host. Yes, you had read it here correctly - Goudie was first offered a contract in late May/early June but declined it. It appears the station upped the offer to VB's satisfaction and the former nighttime host of the raucous "The Pleasure Pit"(on WRKO, circa 2002-2003) is now back at the station as a full time WRKO employee.

Going once, going twice : In a report published last week at, reporter Paul Barbagallo suggests that CBS Corp. is planning to file to take its radio division public by the end of July. Bloomberg reports the decision to pursue an IPO was announced in a prospectus for senior notes due in 2020, and says it could indicate the company has as yet been unable to find a buyer willing to pay the “right price.” Company Chairman/CEO Leslie Moonves confirmed plans to sell or spin-off the broadcast radio division earlier this year. Bloomberg Intelligence estimates that CBS Radio, which operates 117 radio station in 26 markets including Boston(WBZ 1030, WBZ 98.5 The SPortsHub, WZLX 100.7, WODS/AMP 103.3, WBMX/Mix 104.1), could be worth around $2.9 billion. As a stand alone company, it's also very likely CBS Radio could be ripe for a friendly or hostile takeover. First, you'd need about $3 billion 

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