Updated 1:10pm -- SYRACUSE -- There's another choice for rock radio in Central New York. Cumulus Media killed "105.9 The Big Talker" this morning... and after a few hours of stunting, "105.9 The Rebel" launched at 1:05pm. Cumulus Ops Manager Tom Mitchell says the station was inspired by "hundreds of rock music fans throughout Central New York, who kept telling us that they were tired of hearing the same 150 classic tracks over and over."
The first indication of a change came right after the syndicated Bob and Tom Show ended this morning, when the station started playing non-stop TV theme songs -- the same stunting which happened in 2010 when the station flipped from AC-formatted Lite Rock 105.9 (then WLTI) to the "Big Talker" format.
Mitchell says the station will retain Bob & Tom for morning drive. No jocks through other dayparts yet, but Mitchell says he "but plans to add them soon." Hunter Scott is programming the station, adding to his existing duties as PD and morning co-host of Cumulus active rocker 95X (WAQX).
Here's the full press release from Cumulus:
The Rebel Rocks at 105.9 FM
Cumulus Syracuse Operations Manager Tom Mitchell today announced the launch of a new radio station, 105.9 The Rebel (WXTL.) “We talked to hundreds of rock music fans throughout Central New York, who kept telling us that they were tired of hearing the same 150 classic tracks over and over,” said Mitchell.
“We’re giving central New York a new and different choice for rock, with deeper album cuts and true variety. If you’re a fan of Aerosmith, The Stones, Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, Def Leppard, Stevie Ray Vaughan, U2, Yes, The Police, ZZ Top, and Talking Heads, you know they each have more than 2 or 3 great songs. You’ll hear the difference and love The Rebel 105.9.”
Shane Bogardus, Cumulus Syracuse Market Manager said: “Today we made a very exciting move to deliver the attitude and free spirit that inspired some of history's greatest music. Though we are truly proud of the station and content we brought daily to the area with the Big Talker, we have found our groove with the launch of this new station.
“The music will defy the homogenized play list of today's classic rock station and reintroduce the energy that sparked a revolution by those once seen as societies REBELS. We know those listeners still work and play right here in Syracuse and this station is for them! 105.9 The Rebel. More to come at www.1059therebel.com.”
105.9 The Rebel will continue to air the Bob & Tom morning show, 7 days a week 5-10am. The station launched without air personalities in the other dayparts, but plans to add them soon. Program Director for the station is Hunter Scott, who also programs Active Rock 95X (WAQX Syracuse.)
Thanks to CNYRadio.com readers who emailed us when they noticed the TV theme stunting this morning, and also to RadioInsight.com, who noticed our report and then discovered that Cumulus Media had registered internet domains therebel1059.com and 1059therebel.com.