Monday, October 20, 2008

KCBS 740 will be heard on FM starting next week

KCBS All News 740 will also be heard on 106.9 FM starting Oct. 27, giving the station a chance to reach new listeners on FM, the station announced today.

"With this announcement we are ensuring our listeners will have access to the superior news and information they've come to rely on no matter how they choose to receive their audio content," said Doug Harvill, senior vice president and market manager for CBS Radio San Francisco. "And not only that, having the station on the FM radio platform will afford us the opportunity to amass even more consumers of the station. The benefits of this move are plentiful -- from improved sound quality and ubiquitous distribution, to increased brand exposure."

106.9 FM had been home to classic hits KFRC for the past year. Before that it was the home of Free FM, CBS Radio's experiment into edgy talk radio.

The KFRC staff was notified this morning. "We lost some people who we really love and respect here today. That was tough," said Harvill. "But knowing what we're building for the future eases that pain and gets me excited."

The classic hits music will continue to be available as streaming audio at, and on 106.9's HD 2 channel for those listeners with HD radios.

"We've always had a great product on KCBS," said Harvill, "and we're thrilled more people will be able to experience what in excess of one million already do on a weekly basis."

In addition to AM and FM signals, KCBS will add its signal to the AOL radio service.


DavidFerrellJackson said...

...Meaning that KFRC is, once again, a dormant brand name here. CBS is spinning this as a plus for KCBS, while downplaying the fact that Classic Hits KFRC failed to gain traction despite excellent talent and a very good signal.

Keeping KFRC's audio alive only on HD and online means the station is, for all intents, dead -- with no live air talent, it's just a music jukebox, and you can probably do better with your MP3 player.

KFRC will have to compete with much better streaming Oldies stations, such as co-owned K-Earth 101 in L.A. and our own Classic KYA ( here in the Bay Area. Simply running a song then a jingle, then repeat ad infinitum, probably won't be enough.


Anonymous said...

David, you're right that this is a sad moment for KFRC, but given the expansion of podcasting and other alternative means of getting music into people's ears, the demise of music radio was only a matter of time. Spoken word radio is the future. Talk, news, drama, comedy, game shows. Music excites one part of the brain, but words light up a far larger part of that same organ. KCBS is simply moving to where the market (18-39 women) are, the FM band. I wouldn't be surprised if KGO-AM does the same thing -- buys or leases an FM station.

DavidFerrellJackson said...

> the demise of music radio was only a matter of time.

The demise of music radio has nothing to do with "time." It has everything to do with a lack of talent, foresight and imagination by management in radio.

At one time, radio developed talent and thought of itself as an entertainment medium. With deregulation came deforestation: you get rid of as much talent as you can, centralize operations, kill off as much local content as you can, drive away listeners (especially in key demographics), provide an opportunity for alternative technologies ... then say "well, it was a matter of time."

If there were more local owners of radio stations -- in the Bay Area and elsewhere -- we'd see greater choices, more innovation, broader variety. But deregulation took care of that.

That was just a matter of time.

> I wouldn't be surprised if KGO-AM does the same thing -- buys or leases an FM station.

I'd be shocked as hell. Have you been paying attention to the news lately? The economy is in the toilet. Citadel is reeling. Where's the money for buying or leasing an FM signal?

Beyond that, KGO skews older in its programming. Your comment ("KCBS is simply moving to where the market [18-39 women] are, the FM band") doesn't apply to KGO. Women in that age bracket aren't listening to KGO, and won't suddenly start to because it's on FM.

Would it be possible for you to put your name on your posts, rather than posting anonymously?