PRR 2017 Part 2: Philippine Radio in Review

December 31, 2017

2017 has come to a close. But before we bid goodbye to this year, here is a look back at what happened in the world of Philippine Radio. Previously, we traveled back to 2007. For this part, we will discuss the Top 10 radio-related events in Metro Manila (and other key cities).

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1. Change Has Come To PBS

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As the State-Run Philippine Broadcasting Service celebrated its 70th year, a lot of changes had happened to its stations. Thanks to DG Bong “Sonny” Aportadera and DDG Carlo “Carlo Jose” Villo for making the changes possible.

Last February 2, 104.3 FM2 was launched with a Classic Hits format, with an emphasis on 80s & 90s. This gave in some competition with Retro 105.9.

Last June 5, Radyo Ng Bayan was rebranded as Radyo Pilipinas 1 738, along with some new programs. Throughout the next 2 months, most of its provincial stations rebranded to that name.

Last September 18, Radyo Pilipinas 2 918 was launched, merging Sports Radio with Radyo Magasin. Its programming consists of mostly sports from SR, with some general information from RM.

Last November 1, 87.5 FM1 was launched with a CHR/Top 40 format. This is the 1st station on the FM band, as well as the 1st non-commercial station with such format.

Big news also came to 2 of its stations towards the end of this year. According to the latest Nielsen Radio Survey, FM2 is ranked #1 on the ABC market, and RP1 is ranked #7 among the AM stations.

2. Oomph! Goes Halo Halo

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Last May, all Viva radio stations were relaunched as Halo Halo, with an all-OPM format. This is another first of its kind in Cebu, Davao & Zamboanga.

Prior to this, the Oomph! brand was axed last February. However, its Top 40 brand was retained.

3. A Smooth Reformat to Memories

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Last March, Smooth FM stations in Baguio & Cebu rebranded as Memories, with a Classic Hits format. They now play music from the 70s, 80s & 90s. These left Baguio with no Smooth AC outlet, and Cebu with Crossover as its only Smooth AC station in the market.

4. Home Radio is Back Home (Literally)

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Last June 30, Home Radio scrapped its Top 40 format in favor of its old Easy Listening format. Management realized that the station would sell better with its original format. Over the next few days, its. A month later it launched its special programs, notably Emotions in Motion & Solid Gold Sunday (later known as Sunday All-Day Classics).

Prior to this, Home Radio Cebu was the first one to revert to its old Easy Listening format last February. After the Manila station, the other provincial stations followed suit.

5. Former MBC Alumni Get Energyzed

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Energy FM’s “Sarap” concept, which was introduced back in 2014, didn’t fly as a lot of listeners liked its old concept better. Around 2 years later, it scrapped that concept in favor of its old one, but it wasn’t much back on track until the former DJs of MBC stations moved to the station.

On December last year, Papa Jack resigned from Love Radio after 12 years due to timeslot problems. A month later, he moved to Energy FM. Last March 20, he went back on air in his usual timeslot as Papa J, which later on became Papa Jackson.

On May 20, Kuya Chico, who was formerly from Tag in Dubai, followed suit. He became the station’s morning DJ. A few days later, he & Papa Jackson brought back their Friday night program Gabi na, Kabahan ka na!, a revival of Gabi na, Gising Na!.

Justin Taylor, who left Easy Rock last May, also joined the station this July. Now known as Justin, he became one of the station’s voiceovers. Last October, he launched his weekday program called Punto Dekada, which plays 90s music.

Recently, Sisa Usisa (formerly known as Glenn Garci) joined the station as Kapitana Sisa.

6. The Return of Dobol B on News TV

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Last April 24, GMA News TV became relevant once again by returning its DZBB teleradyo portion, Dobol B sa News TV. This time, it has a longer timeslot, running from 6am – 11am.

7. Bible on the Radio

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At the beginning of this year, DZBR began its test broadcast. On March, it was launched as Bible Radio. It is currently the only AM station in Batangas.

8. The Return of the Bandido

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At the beginning of December, DZRJ returned the Radyo Bandido brand. The following week, the 8TriMedia brand disappeared, with some of its programs, such as Kasangga Mo Ang Langit and Lapid Fire, integrated to DZRJ’s programming.

9. Monsters are Alive Again in GenSan (and Zamboanga)

Last June, after around 10 years off the air, the station in GenSan went back on air as Monster EZ 88.7. It plays a mix of Top 40 & Smooth Jazz music. It used to be known as City of Dreams, airing a Smooth Jazz format. And recently, there are times where it’d relay Davao’s BT.

Last December, after 10 years off the air, the station in Zamboanga went back on air as a relay of Manila’s RX.

10. Big Shoes to Fill in

This is also the year 2 DJs have entered the competition between late night programs of mass-based stations.

Last February, YouTube star Lloyd Cadena returns to radio via Love Radio to fill in the timeslot left by Papa Jack(son). He now hosts Let’s Talk About EX with Kara Karinyosa. Prior to this, LC used to be with iFM back in 2015-16 with his program, Gabi ng Hanash.

Last March, Papa Dan, after around 13 years with the station since its Campus Radio days as Dan the Man, left Barangay LS to be with his girlfriend in Australia. Papa Bol (formerly from Barangay FM GenSan) took over Dan’s place.

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Sorry if I missed some other events. But, the list goes on.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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PRR 2017 Part 1: 2007

December 25, 2017

2017 is about to end in a week. But before we bid goodbye to this year, here is a look back at what happened in the world of Philippine Radio. This year’s PRR is divided into 2 parts. For this part, we’ll travel back to 10 years ago. That is 2007, the year big changes occurred on PH radio. We’ll discuss the 7 stations which either made its debut or met its demise.

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1. RT to Hit

January 1: 99.5 RT rebranded as 99.5 Hit FM. A week later, it launched its new programs. David’s House & Sunday sessions were the only programs retained. Hit was similar to RT, but it targeted the younger audiences and focuses more on content than music. It was managed by Dick Rees, who was also an RT DJ.

Prior to the change, RT signed off for the last time on December 18 the previous year. And it remained on air without a brand throughout the remaining days of that year.

2. Heart: Liter than K-Lite

January 1: 103.5 K-Lite rebranded as Heart 103.5 with a Soft AC format. It was managed by Joe Mango, a former Magic DJ who also managed Jam & Wave at that time. However, Heart lasted for only less than 6 months. This will be further explained at #5.

Prior to the change, the DJs of K-Lite bade goodbye on air on November 30 the previous year. And it remained automated throughout December of that year.

3. From Campus to Barangay

February 14: Campus Radio 97.1 rebranded as 97.1 Barangay LS and reformatted from Top 40 to mass-based. It also used its slogan Forever!, which was used back in the mid to late 90s. Most of the DJs remained, albeit under different names.

Prior to the reformat, WLS was ranked #7 on the overall market, making the only Top 40 station to enter the Top 10, hence the slogan the #1 Pop Music Station. Despite the ratings, the sales were low. This paved RGMA head Mike Enriquez to reformat the station in order to reclaim their losses. The avid listeners were disappointed about the reformat big time.

4. Joey & XFM

April 9: 923 Joey rebranded as 92.3 XFM. It was the only station in the metro which played ambient, chill, down-tempo, electronica, house & club music. After a few months, the format didn’t sell. In late July that year, it added tracks which were played during the Joey era.

5. Heart Got Maximized

June 19: 103.5 K-Lite rebranded once again as 103 1/2 Max FM with a Top 40 format. It was managed by Sgt. Pepper, another former Magic DJ. Bearing the slogan In Tune with Manila, its format resembles of its sister station Magic.

6. RJ Went Underground

July 16: After almost 6 months off the air, 105.9 went back on air in low power, playing mainstream rock. It was later identified as RJ UR 105.9, aka Underground Radio. Similar to RJFM, it followed the 3 songs in a row rule, consisting of 1 classic rock, 1 modern rock & 1 pinoy rock. A few months later, it launched its new programs. And every 5am, it played an hour of Eraserheads music, a counterpart of the all-Beatles program aired at the same time on RJFM.

Prior to this, Ramon Jacinto bought its airtime lease in late 2006. By this time, the station was known as Blazin’ 105.9, which held an Urban format. And Blazin’ went off the air by late December that year.

7. Dazzling Music No More

January 11: DWDM 95.5 went off the air unannounced. I was very disappointed about it. I had been listening to this since 2002. Around May 8, it went back on air, albeit during mornings only. It went off the air again the next month. It remained off the air for the next 4 years.

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Stay tuned for Part 2, wherein we’ll review this year’s Top 10 events on PH radio.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!