Shortest-Lived Format (Not Stunting) on Radio - Page 2
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Thread: Shortest-Lived Format (Not Stunting) on Radio

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    1,653
    As for KHIG, it may very well have been a lease versus the ownership doing the format. There are a number of stations that broker and have a client unable to make their next payment after 30 days. A few get a few months in before going broke. Usually it's a rift between the programmer and his money person but sometimes it's just a bone headed format idea the programmer thinks will forever change the way listeners use radio. The later is rare because you know it will never work and you want to save them from themselves or they don't have the cash to even try. We had a guy with a 5 station network come on and go off in 30 days. Seems he was adding stations without bothering to tell his investor who caught on there were some pretty large amount expenses going out all of the sudden. His investor pulled the plug and all the stations he had cancelled him for non-payment.

  2. #12
    In 2003, I worked for the Premier Marketing Group in central Missouri. We flipped our classic leaning country FM, KLIK Country 104, to current country as KBBM B-104.1 and hired a PD from Nashville to run it. It lasted 6 weeks.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    425
    From August 2004 to June 2005, KSUR-AM 1260 in Los Angeles featured a 50s/60s oldies format, simply branded as “Oldies 1260 and 540.” (Back then, they simulcasted on Tijuana, Mexico-based XESURF-AM 540.) Then they flipped to a format called “The Shuffle.” That lasted all of five days. After that, the format was flipped to standards, and that July the call letters on 1260 changed to KKGO. Since then, those calls have moved to the co-owned FM on 105.1, which now carries a country format.

  4. #14
    In Boston there was a wheel of formats stunting when Greater Media changed WTKK 96.9 from talk to Rhythmic AC..early 2013

    Wikipedia:"In compliance with a press release by Greater Media on January 1, the station flipped at 10:00am on January 2 after Jim Braude and Margery Eagan's morning show, starting its new incarnation as Urban Contemporary, "Power 96.9", which began with "Diamonds" by Rihanna. However, this would only turn out to be a stunt; at 10:00am the following day, the station shifted to Dance, branded as "Nova 96.9." At Noon on January 4, the stunting shifted to adult hits, branded as "96.9 Mike FM" (using the former moniker/format of WMKK). WTKK shifted its stunting to classic rock at midnight on January 6, as "96.9 The Bone."
    On January 8, at 11:00 a.m., the station debuted its new, permanent format: Rhythmic AC, with the branding "Hot 96.9"; "Run This Town" by Jay-Z was the first song played."

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by raccoonradio View Post
    In Boston there was a wheel of formats stunting when Greater Media changed WTKK 96.9 from talk to Rhythmic AC..early 2013

    Wikipedia:"In compliance with a press release by Greater Media on January 1, the station flipped at 10:00am on January 2 after Jim Braude and Margery Eagan's morning show, starting its new incarnation as Urban Contemporary, "Power 96.9", which began with "Diamonds" by Rihanna. However, this would only turn out to be a stunt; at 10:00am the following day, the station shifted to Dance, branded as "Nova 96.9." At Noon on January 4, the stunting shifted to adult hits, branded as "96.9 Mike FM" (using the former moniker/format of WMKK). WTKK shifted its stunting to classic rock at midnight on January 6, as "96.9 The Bone."
    On January 8, at 11:00 a.m., the station debuted its new, permanent format: Rhythmic AC, with the branding "Hot 96.9"; "Run This Town" by Jay-Z was the first song played."
    I've seen several cases like this but I can't remember where most of them were.

    But 95 Double Q in Charlotte NC did a format a day for a week in 1991, giving the impression that one of the formats would be chosen. A voice that sounded like Ted Koppel announced the result which was "none of the above".

  6. #16
    In July 1999, then-WCXT (which had an AC format) flipped to rhythmic Top 40 as "The Whip" under an LMA with a prospective buyer. In September of that same year, the owners took control back and returned the station to the previous AC format. The station would eventually get sold a few years later and is now WHTS in Grand Rapids

  7. #17
    September 1993 - Sundance Broadcasting purchased KOY-AM/FM from Edens. KOY-FM was a CHR format; in the doldrums of the format in the early 90s, it had drifted down to a 1.9 share.

    Sundance owner Mike Jorgenson owned crosstown AAA station KZON. While Sundance did a high billing country format in Milwaukee (which gave him the ability to pay cash for KZON) and news/talk and oldies in Boise, Jorgy was set on unconventional ways for his Phoenix stations. He moved to the Valley and KZON was basically his personal jukebox. In KOY-FM he saw the potential to create an entirely new rock format and hired several AOR people and engaged consultants like Lee Abrams, Dave Logan, and Guy Zapoleon to dispense advise.

    Edens had been tagged with an EEO recruiting violation by the FCC. Before the matter could be resolved, the commissioners began to argue among themselves what actually constituted a violation and how to fairly handle them. This delayed the closing of the sale for about 6 months. In the meantime, the staff was doing dry runs for a rock format in the KZON production room.

    Meanwhile, Jorgenson went to a Phoenix Suns game with Edens and watched people dancing in the aisles to upbeat rock and R&B oldies. This led to a eureka moment for Jorgy, who decided that his new KYOT-FM (the calls he had purchased the rights to from somewhere and parked on his Urban AC station at 1230 AM) would become a new format he called Rhythm and Rock. The Coyote would be a mood service kind of radio station, where you would always hear a song that made you feel good - songs that would make people dance in the aisles.

    I loved working for this man, but he drove me crazy with this station. First, despite the fact that he'd already hired a PD and the beginnings of an airstaff (including the late M. Dung from San Francisco) he wanted the station to be jockless. Instead he would hire voice talents to perform oddball vignettes to place between the songs. The people he had hired to be on the air would now help write and produce the bits. One of the voice actors was the man who played Mr. Haney on Green Acres. I'm sure he had no idea what the hell we were doing when he read the scripts, but then again, neither did any of us. The PD and most of the staff were gone about 2 weeks after the launch. Me, a college kid who knew automation, was handed the controls. I could never schedule more than a day ahead because our direction changed daily.

    We had no research. All we had was a directive to play songs that had tempo, and since this was a Jorgy station, we were frequently told to pick the more obscure. Jorgenson wanted to launch with Ike & Tina Turner. You might have expected a familiar song like Proud Mary would be the pick, but Mike's handpicked launch tune was Nutbush City Limits. No worries, when it came time to launch, the terrified media buyer who won the charity raffle to play the first song (being televised live on the noon news no less) hit the wrong box on the touchscreen and we rolled Todd Rundgren "Bang The Drum All Day" instead.

    So every morning I would check my email to find out what songs the owner liked and didn't like, while the creative director would try to figure out what wacky crap we could put between the songs and call it a radio station. The first Arbitron had come in: Y-95's last numbers were a 1.9 and we had a 0.9. Sales could only sign an annual contract with an adult bookstore, The Castle Boutique. The format was a tough sell and nobody got it.

    At one point, KCBS in LA had success with its ARROw format and somebody got their hands on a printout of the library... but the owner red-lined most of the songs because he didn't like them. One day we would go more new wave. Another day more classic rock. And the soul category was filled with clunkers that killed every set.

    So meetings were held and decisions made. A NAC station in Seattle had flipped format, so Jorgy called them and arranged to purchase the CD library and hired its PD. We went out and bought Sony portable DAT recorders and hired NAC talents like Talaya Trigueros, Barbara Blake, and Blake Lawrence to record voice tracks to DAT and overnight them to us. Cliff Smith, who used to be at WJJZ in Philly moved to Phoenix to do mornings.

    We had about a month to put this all together from the time we decided to blow up Rhythm and Rock to go smooth jazz - in Jorgenson's words, "let the programming people program and let (him) focus on revenue." Around the same time, John Sebastian was hired as PD at classic rock KSLX. So I was directed to monitor KSLX and put Sebastian's library on KYOT, but with tighter rotations to basically mess with him while still working on the mechanics of doing a remotely voice tracked Smooth Jazz station before any of the technology we have to remotely voice track existed. All of us had screwed up KYOT so badly that this next one had to be perfect.

    As I said, Mike drove me crazy. But looking back, had he paid for music research and not been so opposed to mainstream pop/rock music, there's a lot of The Coyote in the Variety Hits formats like Jack and Bob-FM. They just did everything correctly and we were pretty much flipping poop at the walls playing songs that nobody wanted to hear. This could have been a great radio station... I mean, we had Abrams and Zapoleon on retainer - but we never did an auditorium test and we ignored much of what they were telling us because that was "too radio."

    For everyone who says that consultants and research are bad and more stations should just be creative and do something different... I have lived through that nightmare. Listen to your research. Listen to your advisors. Flinging poop at the walls is not a strategy.

    So in March 1994, I had a board op come in and midnight and start tracking albums and went to bed for a little bit. At 6 AM I returned and began emptying the CD jukeboxes of the old format and loading in the new one while tracking discs like The Wall. By 6 PM, Rhythm and Rock was dead and Smooth Rhythms was born.

    (Yeah, there was a bit of anti-radio going on with The Coyote, too... It wasn't until Broadcast Architecture came in to do a music test and Frank Cody decided to use that opportunity to have the audience tell the owner to his face that we should call the station Smooth Jazz and use a sax in the logo so people would get it that we stopped trying to be un-radio and start acting like a radio station. You can also thank Jorgy for Geoffery Holder becoming the station voice of so many Smooth Jazz stations after we launched.)

    KYOT was a mess unit it stopped being a mess. Then it thrived. What a time to learn how to do radio.

    And now, thanks to former PD Nick Francis's archives, here's what it sounded like at the Desert Botanical Garden launch party in March 2014:

    https://soundcloud.com/quietmusic/ky.../kyot-archives
    The opinions expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my employers. Retweets are not endorsements.

  8. #18
    Here's one that just happened,again involving Grace Broadcasting in the Jackson, TN area. In Feb. they changed WHPY 105.3 from Hippie Radio (oldies) to a mix of news talk and oldies, and the call letters to WTJK. Yesterday they moved the talk/oldies mix to WTJS 93.1, which had been WWGM with Southern Gospel, and changed 105.3 to Fox Sports. I guess this could be considered a partial format change in Feb., but it only lasted about 2 months.

  9. #19
    In the Charleston market the shortest lived station we had was probably “910 the Zone” in 2012. They were previously the Zone with an earlier owner, but Kirkman, the owner of the station now, moved his ESPN format to FM, and was going to run it there only, with a separate sports format on AM. The station on that frequency lasted two days before moving back to its previous frequency, 1450. There were complaints that people couldn’t get the rimshot FM station well, so they had to rely on AM.

    This guy was going to run a national all-news format on 1450, but the network folded up before the station flipped to that format, so things remained status quo.

  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by anotherguy View Post
    Here's one that just happened,again involving Grace Broadcasting in the Jackson, TN area. In Feb. they changed WHPY 105.3 from Hippie Radio (oldies) to a mix of news talk and oldies, and the call letters to WTJK. Yesterday they moved the talk/oldies mix to WTJS 93.1, which had been WWGM with Southern Gospel, and changed 105.3 to Fox Sports. I guess this could be considered a partial format change in Feb., but it only lasted about 2 months.
    WHPY is the call letters for Hippie Radio here in the Nashville area, specifically Bellevue. Are you sure that this station didn't have different calls? (There is also a WHPY-AM somewhere, but it is not here.)

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