Category Archives: radio

The Radio Carousel: Big changes at The Mountain and over the mountain

The Mountain - official logoThere are several fans of Scott Register and Birmingham Mountain Radio (BMR) who no doubt had no trouble changing the presets in their car as they prepared for their commute home on Tuesday. That’s because BMR confirmed earlier in the day to their new home on terrestrial radio at 107.3 FM. The station, launched online in December 2010, became the first of its kind to start as an internet-only outlet securing an over the air signal afterward when it started its partnership with locally owned media company SummitMedia at 12 p.m. CT.

It was also a busy first part of the week  just over the mountain at Samford University, where officials revealed the creation of Samford Sports Properties on Monday. The new marketing arm of the university’s athletics department also announced multi-year agreements with Birmingham radio stations 99.5 The Vibe and AM 690 The Fan (both owned by Cumulus Media). One of the most important parts of the partnership is the ability for Samford sports to reach a wider audience due to the signal strength of the stations.

lass_ken_squareFinally (though we realize it’s not a radio story), fans of Ken Lass should be happy to learn he’s not only returned to Alabama’s 13 as a host of Daytime Alabama, but he’s once again teaming with his former morning co-anchor Wendy Garner. Monday was his first day.

The Radio Carousel: Rock 99.5 is no more; enter The Vibe

995 vibe splash imageLong time listeners to Rock 99.5, a.k.a. WZRR-FM, recently learned their classic rock station was changing formats to CHR. The folks at Radio Insight first reported the change late last week after they noticed the site was down. As they point out via their format change watch list, it’s part of an annual trend – one that’s shows there’s not necessarily any set formula either.

There are folks online attempting to organize an Occupy 99.5 the VIBE fan page on Facebook, though the Bring the Rock back to Rock 99.5 fan page also exists. The pages have 115 fans and 201 fans respectively as of 8:15 AM Thursday morning (January 5). There’s also an interesting video on YouTube posted by BababoeyBHM – who incidentally just joined the video-sharing service the same day the piece was posted.

According to comments on both pages, comments being left on the VIBE’s page not supporting the format change are being deleted almost as soon as the entry is made.

This is the station’s fourth format change overall since its launch in 1977.

The Magic City through NPR’s lens

NPR & 90.3 WBHM logosBirmingham, AL and the surrounding metro area have received a great deal of attention in recent months on NPR. Area member stations, specifically WBHM, helped make many people aware of what happened here and throughout the state of Alabama and continue to share information about the recovery efforts currently underway.

NPR Music recently did a piece on Gip’s Place in Bessemer, calling it “a dream” and making several local fans of the music venue happy about its getting national attention. The local blues spot had been the focus of several local pieces recently including one in B-Metro Magazine last year.

Most notably, the NPR series The State of the Re:Union (created by Al Letson as an entry in the Public Radio Talent Quest back in 2007) recently visited Alabama’s Magic City to take a look at how things are going – and perhaps to break through a few perceptions as well. The episode is currently available for download from the series’ website. The site also has short documentaries filmed during the visit, like this piece about – you guessed it – Gip’s Place.

Saying hello to The Mountain!

The Mountain - official logoIt appears there were a lot of people sitting at computers across metro Birmingham at 12 p.m. on Monday afternoon.

They were all waiting to hear what the first song ever broadcast digitally by The Mountain would be. We can’t blame them; we’ve been waiting since this post appeared in early November.

By the way, it was Mountain Song by Jane’s Addiction. They’ve been praising the station via Twitter since

In the last 30+ hours we’ve seen several more pieces shared online about the new station. Matt Cuthbert over at provides an overview of what got us to yesterday’s launch of the city’s latest internet-only radio station. It includes links to posts on and Birmingham Weekly about the effort and the first twelve songs played on the station. Bob Carlton wrote up his own overview of the station’s launch for his Birmingham News column.

But wait, there’s more…
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This is not a revolution. This is a solution.

The Mountain - official logo“The Uprising” across Birmingham, AL will soon have a web-based radio station resulting from their online revolution earlier this year.

Scott Register of Reg’s Coffee House was the last voice heard on Birmingham’s Live 100.5FM back on Valentine’s Day, despite nearly 16,000 people showed their support for the station and the format via an online campaign.

Recent activity on Facebook suggests that a web-based solution in the form of an online radio station is about to be unveiled to Alabama’s Magic City. A website has been created for The Mountain, as well as a Facebook fan page and a Twitter account.

According to the digital outposts, the new venture plans to launch later this month with mobile apps available for download for when you want to listen while out running, etc. Reg’s Coffee House is also expected to make a return to the digital airwaves.

FYI: The “issue” with Timetable is being worked on; the hope is that it will be back up and operational by the end of next week.

WENN goes Neo-Soul

The radio carousel has apparently decided to visit more than one station here in Birmingham, AL this month, bringing a change to both AM and FM dials and a return of a respected set of call letters.

WENN-FM station logoWhile the effort to Save Live 100.5 has grown to more than 17,000 people on Facebook, the call letters WENN have apparently returned to the FM dial at a new address. The format change for the AM signal from news/talk to neo-soul and new FM simulcast of that new format takes place as people gathered downtown today for the first day of the annual A.G. Gaston Conference, named for the prominent African American businessman, Demopolis native and incidentally a former owner of the call letters.

Birmingham’s Neo-Soul Station 101.9 FM is also currently streaming on the Internet and appears to be owned by Cox Radio. The station is currently running an automated playlist without on-air personalities, though one would assume that will change in the near future.

11K strong and growing effort to Save Live 100.5

Save Live 100.5Since our last post about the return of the radio carousel to Birmingham, AL for Live 100.5 FM, more than 11,000 more people have joined the group on Facebook set up to attempt to save the radio station from a pending format change (though as of this post less than 1,200 have signed an online petition asking for Citadel Broadcasting to change its mind). It’s been helped along by pleas on Twitter courtesy of artists like Sara BareillesIngrid Michaelson, and Pete Yorn .

The URL for the new station, an FM-simulcast of WAPI-AM, has already been secured (incidentally one day after parent company Citadel Broadcasting presented its reorganization plan to creditors due to its bankruptcy filing back in December). It also already established its own presence on Facebook via a regular personal profile.

Fans of the station’s current format will want to know that a concert has been organized for this Wednesday, February 17 beginning at 8 p.m. at WorkPlay on Birmingham’s Southside. The music venue has shared its thoughts about the situation on its website as of this afternoon. The lineup for the show includes Will Hoge, Matthew MayfieldThe Enemy Lovers and DJ CO CO with proceeds benefiting the Jimmie Hale Mission and the Greater Birmingham Humane Society.

There also appears to be a group organizing to be at the start line and then along the Mercedes Marathon route tomorrow (Sunday) morning holding up signs to inform more people about the situation at the radio station.

The word on the street is that Live 100.5 FM will cease original programming in its current format when tomorrow’s broadcast of Reg’s Coffee House is finished at 2 p.m. CT.