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News Archive: July 2005

July 1, 2005
There's another SAM Radio affiliate: 94.7 WELK in Elkins, WV. SAM 94.7 debuted at noon on Wednesday (6/29), replacing the Jones Radio Network AC format that formerly aired on the station.

July 4, 2005
Happy Independence Day, everyone!

The Phoenix page has been updated with a corrected version of the station's history.

Piedmont Communications' WOJL in Louisa, VA is the latest station to sign on with Westwood One's SAM Radio satellite feed. The station, formerly an Oldies outlet, flipped to Variety Hits as 105.5 SAM FM at noon on July 2, according to VARTV.com.

July 5, 2005
Arbitron has a fascinating study (in association with Edison Media Research) that is available online showing the success of the Variety Hits format in the P25-54 demo. Click here to read it. The P25-54 Winter 2005 info is very encouraging: Phoenix #1, Austin #1, Oklahoma City #2, Jackson (MS) #3, Dallas #6, Kansas City #6, Norfolk #7, Denver #16. In the case of Denver, remember that the station is a rimshot (if you doubt it, check out this page on Radio-Locator). KJAC actually has city-grade coverage into two other markets: Ft. Collins, CO (where it tied for #2 12+ in Fall 2004) and Cheyenne, WY (which is under embrago, so I don't know how it did there).

The bottom line is this: the format is doing very well in the big-money demo (P25-54). That is why it has spread to so many major markets across the country.

July 7, 2005
Two more SAM stations have signed on board: 106.1 WLVO in Live Oak, FL (northwest of the Gainesville area) and 93.5 WMLV in the Meridian, MS market.

July 11, 2005
The Las Vegas JACK-FM station has changed calls from KMZQ-FM to KKJJ, effective 7/6/2005.

In Great Falls, MT, modern rock KINX (X107) has changed to the SAM satellite-fed Variety Hits format as SAM 107.3.

July 19, 2005
The New York Post has a rather anti-JACK-FM article available online here (free registration required to read it). What the article fails to mention are the P25-54 ratings, which are the most important. 12+ numbers are meaningless (look at the Tampa 12+ ratings, where WDUV is almost always #1, but in the "money" demos it hardly ever places in the top ten). As always, numbers can be spun in any way a writer wants. I'd be *much* more interested in comparing and contrasting the P25-54 numbers.

One thing to note: when an article calls something "controversial", usually it means the writer doesn't like it. Keep that in mind for anything you read or hear.

July 20, 2005
It's been nearly two months, and the WOXY/WAXZ/WAOL trimulcast in Cincinnati is still nameless (following a brief stint as Bob FM when it first debuted). But if you live within 50 miles of Cincinnati, you are eligible to compete in a "name the station" contest. www.nameusandwin.com has the details, if you're interested. I'm not eligible, but if I was I'd suggest Larry FM, in honor of Larry Flynt. But that's just me. The contest runs through July 31, 2005.

July 25, 2005
KKYD in Topeka has flipped from Rhythmic CHR (Wild 92.9) to Variety Hits as 92.9 Max FM.

July 27, 2005
According to All Access, the judge in the Sparknet vs. Bonneville trademark infringement case (concerning the "Playing What We Want" service mark) told both sides on Monday (7/25) that he plans to rule on the matter in five weeks.

Meanwhile, the future of 92.1 Bob FM in Sacramento is in doubt, as First Media is selling its 80s formatted 103.9 signal to Bustos Media (which is expected to flip it to Spanish). First Broadcasting is expected to announce today if the "Flash 103.9" 80s format or the "92.1 Bob FM" Variety Hits format will survive on the rimshot 92.1 signal. The insider talk out of Sacramento is that Bob FM will be the format that will be squeezed out as a result. That could, in turn, open a door for Infinity to bring the JACK-FM brand to the city. We'll see.

July 28, 2005
I've discovered that First Broadcasting has registered the domain name flash921.com. That likely means the end of Bob 92.1 in Sacramento.

July 30, 2005
There's nothing new to report yet in the Sacramento 92.1 signal situation with the Flash 80s format and the Bob Variety Hits format, though all indications (including the freshly registered flash921.com domain by First Broadcasting) point toward the end of Bob in Sacramento.

There's a brand new JACK-FM station in Canada. This time it's in Regina, Saskatchewan, where the former Classic Rock formatted Rock 94 has relaunched with Variety Hits as 94.5 Jack FM. I'm listening to it online right now as I type this, and it sounds good. According to my sources, the station is owned by Rawlco Communications, Ltd., which makes it the first non-Rogers Broadcasting-owned JACK-FM station in Canada, to the best of my knowledge. If anyone knows differently on that, by all means please let me know. This is the first JACK-FM to launch in Canada since February 2004, and it's the first Variety Hits station to go on in Saskatchewan.

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