KGY radio undergoes major revamping

February 2nd, 2010 by Ken

If everything goes as planned, by May 1, KGY radio will go all High Definition (HD) with expanded power and a new FM format.

Under  the HD concept, each frequency, in this case 96.9 FM. can carry two additional channels called HD 2 and HD 3. 

The HD 1 or 96.9 FM will change from a real country format to a new format called The Sound, a mix of cool classics and hot hits.   According to Kevin Huffer, the station’s program director, the new format is just making its way to America’s shore from Europe and is currently only in two stations in the United States – – New York and Chicago.

The format will combine the best hits of the 80’s and 90’s with today’s contemporary stars such as Taylor Swift, Snow Patrol and Christina Aguilera.

Helping the new format is a new boost in power with a clear, strong signal reaching into the Seattle market.   A member of the Kerry family, Mike Kerry, which owns the station, said that  “local to us is now an expanded area.”

The station will be programed locally and use local DJ’s, many of whom are familiar names in the community.

In addition, because the HD allows the use of two additional channels, the AM 1240 will also be broadcast on 96.9 HD2.   1240 AM will also be continued to be broadcast on its current dial station, but those with HD radios will be able to pick up the broadcast throughout the entire FM HD area.

Mike Kerry said that the AM will be helped when the new AM antenna comes on line, something he expects to happen shortly.

The final new element is on 96.9HD3 which will broadcast a real country format with more music and less talk.  It can only be picked up by those who have a HD radio.

Station manager Dick Pust admits that HD radio is not yet standard around the country but sees it as a wave of the future.  “More and more people are buying HD radios,” he said.  “Next year it will be a standard fixture on many makes of cars including those made by Ford.”

“This is going to be a brand new radio station for us,” Pust said. “96.9 The Sound.”

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