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Gone Country. Can Country Music Survive in New York City?

1-21-13

It's been puzzling to many why the number one radio market in the country was without a strong FM signal playing Country Music. Back in 1996, New York's WYNY became WKTU, putting an end to country music on the radio in The Big Apple. That is until yesterday. Cumulus turned Country music back on in the City when it flipped WRXP, a dial position it purchased in 2012, to "Nash 94.7." Country music is in a very good place these days with the number one music star in the world, Taylor Swift, coming out of the Country format and there's the very poplar Television program, The Voice, featuring another big country star Blake Shelton. So what's it going to take for Country music to succeed in New York City? 

Charlie Cook has been a part of Country Music and Country Radio for a very long time. He says he's very excited Cumulus is bringing country radio back to New York City. "It will be a huge success.  Cumulus has proven that they know how to do country radio. I worked at the last two successful country radio stations in the city, WHN and WYNY, so I know that the format is viable in New York City. The format tells great stories in each song and those stories can resonate with New Yorkers just like they do in other markets. The key has been finding a home on a full market signal and Cumulus has done that."

There were no DJ's when the station launched yesterday but that could just be temporary as it often is during a fresh format launch. Cumulus is expected to have a formal release on the station some time this morning. Country radio consultant Joel Raab says this station can be a success in the City and here's how. "It certainly can work with right mix of music, talent and marketing.  I think New York is ready for it.  Their New Jersey centric signal is most likely an advantage as New Jersey has always been strong for Country."

In October, Cumulus WFME from the nonprofit Christian organization, Family Stations, Call letters were changed to WRXP, which gave some the idea that Cumulus would go Rock. After a short stunting period, Cumulus flipped to Country yesterday and confirmed this was not stunt, they are giving New Yorkers what they have not had since 1996, great Country music. You can listen HERE




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(1/23/2013 2:15:21 PM)
Welcome newly born country station to the airwaves of New York! Long overdue! :)

- June at Bryan Farrish
(1/22/2013 3:03:32 PM)
I was an owner and GM of XL Country (an outstanding Country Staton) on 103.7FM (located in the Northern NJ part of the NY Metro)as part of Group M Communications Inc. from 1979-1980 before flipping to "POWER 103". It was good for business at that time, but I'm glad to have another country station to listen to now. Thanks Cumulus.

- Marvin Strauzer
(1/22/2013 2:56:06 PM)
Bob Struble
Bob Struble

@rjstruble 1 Jul 09 slept well but got off the redeye with lingering ambien effects. dont remember the drive home much. auditioning for the kennedy clan...

http://twitter.com/rjstruble/status/2425449691

- An arrogant ass drives DUI

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