New York radio somehow missed the whole "alternative music" wave in the 1980s and 1990s. On the West Coast, we have KROQ here in Los Angeles, 91X in San Diego and Live 105 in San Francisco... New York, meanwhile, has tried and failed several times over the years to maintain an alt rocker. (Long Island's WLIR/WDRE came closest to a heritage for the market, but barely reached Manhattan. And it's now long gone.)
At several points, the onetime Howard Stern outfit WXRK ("K-Rock") flirted with modern rock, but would always revert back to more mainstream, "active rock." Finally, the station flipped to top 40. New York, meanwhile, has for years been one of the few major markets without an alternative, or "modern," rock station.
CBS Radio may soon solve that problem, sort of, by piping L.A.'s KROQ on to the HD subchannel of one of its New York stations. (It already broadcasts KROQ on a subchannel in San Diego.) Radio Insight has the details:
CBS Radio has begun simulcasting a number of stations from other markets on its HD subchannels. In Los Angeles, Country 95.1 KFRG Riverside is now available on 94.7 KTWV-HD3 and Hot AC “Sophie 103.7″ KSCF San Diego is heard on 97.1 KAMP-HD2.
Ot looks as though CBS plans on more out-of-market HD simulcasts. Los Angeles’ 106.7 KROQ is now on in San Diego on 103.7 KSCF-HD2 and could soon be heading to New York based on the registration of kroqnyc.com.
I kinda like the idea of being able to hear popular out-of-market radio stations -- it beats the computerized, automated jukeboxes that most stations currently broadcast on their HD subchannels.
Not many folks own an HD radio, so this experimentation won't have much of an effect. And CBS Radio's moves have already raised the ire of independent radio station owner Saul Levine, who believes the company is illegally expanding the reach of out-of-market stations.