Friday, February 8, 2008

WRXP, The New York Rock Experience

WRXP, New York 101.9 FM went on air this week, the first new rock station in the city since maybe the last incarnation of WNEW in the 90s? The slogan is "WRXP, the New York Rock Experience, and it's run by some folks I know, Bryan Schock as Music Director and John Bradley of SBR Creative and Mike Henry of Paragon Media Strategies are consulting. For some reason, this is a very diffficult thing to do -- it's been years since anyone attempted anything different -- but I also think it is because WFUV, WSOU and WFMU are so excellent over the past few years especially. Good luck to all.

But thanks to modern technology (and my old Panasonic baseball game radio), you can decide for yourself, hit play below and tune in to hear a sample 45 minutes of WRXP, recorded this afternoon!

One fun thing they have on the air already, are little "rock memories" of New York as recalled by people who don't seem to have much local flavor. The stories are interesting, and detailed, such as one that mentioned Bob Dylan dedicating a song to George Harrison on stage at MSG. I must admit that I did have the full-on NY rock experience of hearing Springsteen's "Jungleland" and yelling "Clarence!" during the sax solo.

A truly bizarre promo mentions many old New York djs and radio stations, including some which are still in full effect: WPIX (which at 102.3 was a hair away from 101.9); WFUV, WPLJ, WNEW and Cousin Brucie. They left out Meg Griffin, a common thread in most of their spiel, Sirius Disorder, and the fact that WFUV is home to most of the old 'NEW djs and artists. We may as well throw in New Yorker Mike Marrone's XM station The Loft too even if he isn't around here in body (who else plays Dwight Twilley and Marshall Crenshaw as much?). When the promo had a quote from someone saying "when WPLJ was...", I went over to 95.5 to see. It's still there.

Speaking of Meg Griffin and Sirius, I only looked at my little baseball radio once to see what song was playing on the readout. It seems I've become accustomed to that great feature on satellite and on the ipod.

WRXP is also up against Cousin Brucie's old station WCBS, but will benefit massively by folks tuning back and forth between the two frequencies, based on MY way of listening at least.

I am not surprised that WRXP omits a large part of the New York Rock Experience (that btw all the other stations I have mentioned include): Black Americana music. They are pumping out white music for white people, a challenge especially without playing country artists (like Bon Jovi). There is plenty of new music and great old music to play but I feel people around here have more diverse taste and "experiences" even if they define themselves as rock fans. And some of the biggest artists come from these fringes or offshoots of rock.

RIP, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The Times says he made the Beatles more productive. I say they were in the middle of nowhere and they were the Beatles, just w/o distraction.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm thinking this isn't all that dissimilar to Jack FM's format when you get right down to it. My take on Jack was that their only really big mistake was blowing a station out of the water that people truly loved in favor of the Jack format. I think putting Jack at 102.7 might have been smarter. I don't know how well "Fresh 102.7" is doing, but it could hardly do worse than any of the other formats they tried after getting rid of the classic WNEW-FM. Jack, to me, would have been a logical progression in time from what they were before.