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News Archive: July 2006

July 2, 2006
It's been reported in a couple of the trades that KCCL-FM (Boss Radio 101.9) in Sacramento, which is reportedly flipping to country on 7/4/2006, is a Variety Hits/Adult Hits station. That is inaccurate. It is actually a Classic Hits station with a wider-than-normal playlist. The distinction is that it doesn't have music in the playlist from more recent times, thus not meeting all of the criteria to fit the format. There's already a Variety Hits station in the market with 93.7 Jack FM (KQJK), which may or may not have played a role in the demise of Boss Radio, but regardless don't mistake that as another station in the format to fall in Sacramento.

July 5, 2006
Thanks to Colin Kelly for sending me a link with some very detailed information about the application for the perspective JACK-FM station in Oxford & South Oxfordshire, England. Click here to read the detailed .pdf file (to the tune of 70 pages.) In part, it is described like this: Jack is a music radio station which complements existing local commercial radio by appealing mainly to older adults through a distinctive "no format" blend of quality popular rock based musc supported by frequent and concise local news and information. The style of the radio station is built around a free sounding theme which, for most of the time, replaces traditional highly formatted radio presentation with listener vox-pops and well produced short voice-links which are distinctive, entertaining and different. I've never seen the format described quite like that, but that's a pretty accurate way to put it.

July 7, 2006
Mix 101.1 (KRXX) in Kodiak, Alaska jumped to JACK-FM on 7/3/2006, dropping its former Hot AC format (which, like JACK-FM, was also obtained via satellite from ABC.) The station has one of the smallest broadcast zones on the big list, eminating from 228' at just 3,000 watts.

July 11, 2006
One Variety Hits format flip I entirely missed during my move in March was WFQR/WFRQ in Cape Cod, MA. Thanks to Rick Cabral for giving me the heads-up on that.

We have a winner in the Variety Hits war in Santa Maria/Lompac, CA, and it's Pirate Radio 104.1 (KBOX). It's competitor, 105.1 Mike FM (KWSZ) dropped the format yesterday to become Spanish Oldies as Concierto 105.1, according to KWSZ was sold by Mapleton Communications to Emerald Wave Media in April 2006 for $1.5 million, and it appears that the new owners decided to take the station in another direction.

July 13, 2006
Yesterday (7/12) was "Black Wednesday" at CBS Radio. As part of the company's restructuring, 115 jobs were cut nationwide, including WCBS-FM/New York VP/GM Chad Brown and KCBS-FM/Los Angeles VP/GM Trip Reeb. The company's radio divison has struggled since the departure of Mel Karmazin to Sirius, and the loss of ad revenue from the move of Howard Stern to Sirius has only intensified the problem.

CBS Radio plans to sell station clusters in several of its smaller markets some time later this year as part of its restructure. Markets announced to be divested that have CBS-owned JACK-FM stations are Fresno, Buffalo, and San Antonio.

July 28, 2006
In Jacksonville, NC, NextMedia's Soft AC-formatted Lite 98.7 (WILT) flipped to Variety Hits as 98.7 Will FM on Monday (7/24) at 3 PM Eastern. Conveniently, the station already had WILT as its call letters (for "Lite"), which also happens to be a close fit for the Will name. The station had been Soft AC for only 16 months; it went to Soft AC from Oldies in March 2005.

According to, McMillan, MI's 96.7 WMJT signed on as Variety Hits under the moniker Eagle 96.7 on 7/1/2006.

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