We were listening to WCKG, the former “Free FM” talk station at 105.9, just before 5:00 pm today and they were simulcasting WBBM-AM on their frequency.
I’ve always been sort of fascinated, in a geeky way, at how stations handle format changes, and this was an interesting stunt: WCKG played simulcasts of WBBM and other CBS-owned radio stations in the hours leading up to the new format’s introduction.
Anyway, I wanted to hear how they would identify themselves at the top of the hour, and right at 5:00 pm there was a “whooshing” jingle and the introduction of the new “Fresh 105.9″ followed by a U2 song.
Yup, 105.9 is now a “lite rock” station, perfect for listening while you’re having a root canal. U2 was followed by Kelly Clarkson, and later by Gwen Stefani. Wow. Edgy.
Since WLIT 93.9 switched over to all-Christmas music last week, this is clearly an attempt by WCKG to snatch away any listeners who miss their KT Tunstall and John Mayer.
The thing is, WLIT stopped playing that music months ago. For some reason, they now define “lite rock” as the worst music of the 1970s: think KC and the Sunshine Band and Gloria Gaynor. You know, the stuff we’d rather forget about.
Will WCKG be successful with their target demographic– Women, 25-54? I know at least one member of that demographic who’s already rolled her eyes at the whole thing.

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