Rock 93.9/101.7 Flips Format – Update

The 93.9 side of the dial has, as expected, become “The Pulse” – an all-talk format station retransmitting from WTPL in Bow/Concord.

101.7 continues with rock music, announcing themselves as “WVRR 101.7,” although an old promo for 93.9/101.7 slips in occasionally. The music side is robojock-driven, I’ve yet to hear an on-the-air host speak. Morning Buzz and Quinn & Cantara remain.

According to Upper Valley Radio staff I spoke with today, the music will continue on WVRR. Interestingly, I was told that Liz Fox may be returning to do mid-day air work. “I believe that’s under negotiation,” a station representative told me. The afternoons, she said, would be “music-driven” – in other words, robojock.

I’m still undecided about this news. Former PD Steve Smith posted a comment to my original post indicating that his days in Upper Valley radio are far from over. “I have a new radio gig in the works,” he says. “It’s not officially announced to the media yet, but when it, I will let you know!” He ends with a parting shot:

Just one note to any former listener of my former station: I was the Program Director of that radio station for almost 5 years. My goal in radio, from the get-go, was to bring a Rock radio station to 101.7, and also the Upper Valley. Running Rock 93.9 & 101.7 was a dream job for me. We started small and grew into something amazing. We did alot together with Rock The Whale, our Stuff A Bus campaign, Battle Of The Bands, Who Wants To Be A DJ….. I always wanted the station to be a heritage rock station for the Valley. And it was well on it’s way. But now, sadly, it’ll be a station that you look back on and think “man I loved that radio station.” It’s dead in the Upper Valley. I think back to when I listened to Q106. I personally use to love that radio station. It was the most listened to station in the late 80’s/early 90’s. Then it got crappy. Sadly…that’s what will happen to my former station. So, to all the listeners, I am sorry that you and I both have to live thru this. I miss the station and I miss the listeners. I do NOT, however, miss the management. I am much more happy not working for them. The flipping of 93.9 is just one of many reason I am glad to be gone.

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Rock 93.9/101.7 To Flip Formats

Word on the street is that Lebanon-based WVRR, bought earlier this year by Jeff Shapiro’s Great Eastern Radio group, is switching to all talk soon.  Rock 93.9/101.7 PD and drive time DJ Steve Smith got the hook yesterday, coincidentally the same day former WNTK afternoon talker Gardner Goldsmith debuted on Great Eastern’s “The Pulse.”

Over 13 employees have been let go since the buyout, part of Clear Channel’s sell-off of small to medium properties approved by the FCC last November.  The format switch is a blow to the local music scene, which could count on a little bit of airplay with Smith at the helm.

Ironically, reports are that Clear Channel was a friendlier environment for both staff and musicians trying for exposure.  Hard to imagine the corporate behemoth as a symbol of the good old days, but there you go.

On Goldsmith’s show yesterday, I noticed a lot of ads for businesses in Sunapee, Newport and Claremont – that seemed odd for a Concord station.  Now it makes more sense.  I would not be surprised if Shapiro, the king of triangulation back in his Q-106 days, simply bulks up his talk empire with the flip of a few switches.